Saturday, September 30, 2006

Conky Kitten - cat genius

Rachel was just wheeling out the pram when she noticed the car's hazard lights where flashing. Which was odd, given that it was stationary in the driveway. So she called me and I dashed out with the keys. On opening the driver's side door, out jumped Conker, with a mildly impatient meow. By applying my finest Columbo-honed detective skills I can only conclude that he had jumped into the car when I was unloading it earlier that day and found himself locked in. Not wishing to remain there indefinitely, he did what anyone would do, and depressed the hazard light button, located top-centre in the dashboard, and awaited for assistance to arrive. And lucky he did so, as it was eighty-degrees plus, the windows were rolled up and we weren't planning on using the car again until the next day.

Conky Kitten - handy with motors.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Summer Holiday Part I

Ah, Summer holidays! Not what they were of course; nor will they ever be again, probably. But, considering the circumstances, a great deal of fun nonetheless. As is now practice and custom with reporting on my infrequent holidays, I will spin this tale out over as many weeks as possible, as if in an attempt to convince myself that I enjoy a life of leisure.

Ethan (at 2 months) with his cousin Katrina (two years older).

My mum and dad arrived in Portland on September 2nd, fresh from the sleeper car after their 44 hour cross-country journey from Chicago. It was so good to see them again! That said, I half-expected everyone to feel homicidal by day four. Therefore I was very pleasantly surprised to find that, on the contrary, we all got along brilliantly; mum helped out with the night-time feeds and so we all got some rest; and considering the necessity of eight feeds a day and the vast amounts of equipment Ethan apparently requires for even the most insignificant of adventures, we got to take advantage of much of what the region has to offer over a two week period, which seemed to fly by.

Sunday took us first to Lake Oswego, where the whole family was gathered, and thence on a tour of wine-country.

Katrina plays amongst the bocci at a vineyard in Yamhill (dad on the left). Squint a little and you could be in Tuscany.

In the wine cellars.

Back at the lake, Leon organised a speedboat tour whilst Linda prepared cedar-plank salmon for supper.

Ethan being burped by his daddy.

Mum enjoying Leon's speedboat tour of Lake Oswego.

Dad and Leon on Lake O; geese off the starboard bow.

We stopped at the lake overnight, then drove down to Salem on Labor Day for the Oregon State Fair. This annual event is a vast combination of fun-fair, agricultural show and special events; we'd missed the rodeo but made the demolition derby.

Dad takes on Rachel at Whac-a-mole at the State Fair.

Hold on to your hats - it's a demolition derby!

I relax with a giant watermelon flavoured snow-cone, Ethan relaxes with grandma...

...and condescends to a charming smile. No doubt about this one.