Yesterday, besides being the Big Fat End of the World, was Calhoun's eleventh birthday, and was celebrated at the community center in Montavilla, which was just a block or two from where I lived for a few years as a baby, while my father was going to Multnomah School of the Bible. (Digression -- why on EARTH do you suppose they were pretentious enough to name it that?) You might ask why, when both Calhoun's father and his mother live in Milwaukie, we were celebrating his birthday on 82nd and NE Glisan -- far from the home stretch. I do not know the answer to this pertinent question. I did not really know the details of the arrangements when I said I would be glad to go and asked if I could bring any refreshments, or I might not have gone. It was a long day. But Mickey and Kevin and Ensai (Calhoun's sister) and I had fun talking in the kitchen while the boys played in the gymnasium, for hours. And when it was finally over we drove Ensai home and then got very lost in first Ladd's Addition and then Brooklyn, looking for 17th Avenue to take us back to Milwaukie. I had suggested taking Woodstock, but both Mickey and Kevin disagreed with me, so I sat back and watched. I was in the back seat, croaking "We'll never get out! Never!" as we wound around and around in Ladd's Addition, and Mickey was driving, but she was cheerful and patient and no one got mad!
Anyway, after dropping off Kevin and Calhoun, we went to the Hawaiian restaurant behind my house, and ordered some appetizers, and while we were waiting and chatting, a girl of about seven with white-blonde hair approached me. She addressed me, but was stammering and sort of milling about, vocally, as I was taking her in, and before she finished a sentence, I cried out, "Natalie!" And it was -- her sister Emily and their mother, whose name I cannot recall, came over too, and chatted briefly. Natalie was two years old, the last time I saw her, and Emily six --they were two of my daycare children. I got several tight hugs from Natalie, and a shy stiff one from Emily. So the day ended very well indeed!