Saturday, November 3, 2018

Back from whence I came

I wouldn't ordinarily go two weeks without a post on my blog without telling you why, but this time I had a special reason.

See, last Friday I executed an international, in-person surprise birthday greeting, and in the weeks leading up to it, I was increasingly worried that something, anything, would spoil that surprise.

My blog is an easy "something, anything" that could have done that.

I don't think my Mom actively reads my blog anymore, because her computer is a bit under the weather and has been for the better part of a year, leading her to use it only minimally. But the chance was there, and I just couldn't risk it.

That's right, last Saturday my Mom had a landmark birthday -- for the sake of her vanity I won't reveal which -- and the day before that, her son appeared on her front porch in Bedford, Massachusetts, when he should have been in Australia as far as she knew.

The desired effect was achieved. After looking at me for a few moments with a small amount of confusion -- you don't expect to answer the door and randomly see your son standing there -- she slapped her hands over her mouth and shouted "Oh my goodness!" And much reveling was had by all.

It took a bit to get there. Because it was a surprise, we couldn't actually be sure my Mom would be there when I showed up. My sister, who lives nearby, thought she would be going out for an early birthday lunch, but also that she had a potentially conflicting plan in the morning. My sister thought she was canceling that conflicting plan, so I thought arriving at 10:30 would allow me to catch her getting ready for lunch.

Well, her car was there, but she wasn't. I eventually determined this after calling four times in the space of 20 minutes and getting no answer, which ruled out the possibility of her being in the shower. My plan was to call her, as though I were calling from Australia, and then ask her to hold for a minute, at which point I would appear at her door. Better to put me in her mind so the eventual reveal was not so much of a shock. But she didn't pick up, meaning that even though her car was there, she was not.

Or she was lying hurt on the floor. It was a remote possibility, but I did consider it. So I went and peered in a window, but indeed it was quite dark in there.

To make a long story short, she did not come home for nearly three hours. I walked off to get a bite to eat and back, read my book a bit, and then was going to walk off again. I had just started up the street when I saw her approaching as the passenger in a car. It turned out she had done her morning thing after all and postponed her birthday lunch.

I let her get inside the house before finally knocking on the door and revealing myself.

Anyway, we had a really nice visit and I also saw other friends in the Boston area, other family in Maine (my dad and his wife), and friends in Los Angeles. A whirlwind nine days gone, but really more like a practical week when you factor in all the flying time.

And now I am home and can blog again.

I'm sure I have a lot to tell you about in terms of my movie consumption (I watched 13 movies while I was gone, all but two of which came on various flights), but for now I'll just explain my two-week absence as a means of updating you and getting me back in the swing of things.

Hope you had a good Halloween and watched some movies that scared the dickens out of you. Me, I watched On Chesil Beach, The Death of Stalin and The Insult on Halloween, which gives you a little idea of how topsy turvy everything has been.

Looking forward to stabilizing and resuming my normal routine.

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