Tuesday, January 22, 2008

From the Inland Empire to the O.C....

Jeez, seems like I never have time to blog anymore. We just got back a few hours ago from a visit to the many branches of my family tree in Southern Cal. It was actually a surprisingly good visit. We went to see an incredible, awesome movie--Juno, which I highly recommend--with my mom and stepdad, and had an amazingly chill visit with my dad, stepmom, and stepsister on Sunday, and a good visit with my aunt and uncle earlier today on our way out. We also got to visit my younger cousin in her new digs--she moved out of her parents' house a few months ago and is very excited to be in her own place (well, with a roommate). She called looking for my advice not too long ago because her dad (my uncle) didn't seem to be dealing well with her moving out; but I know he'll come around, and she's good with the parental visits--she comes over at least once a week. They only live about half an hour away.

It's hard for them, though--my uncle is a little traditional in some ways, and my cousin is a hairstylist and Starbucks barista with numerous tattoos. Not exactly what he was envisioning, I'm sure. Her younger sister is graduating with her BA this upcoming May, which makes him a little happier, but I know he's not looking forward to the empty nest. Poor Uncle.

I can't believe I had such a positive visit with my dad. Usually I'm super stressed when we go over there, and if he's in a bad mood...well, both my parents are the type of people who can affect an entire room or situation with their mood. If they're happy, everyone's relaxed or at least non-stressed. If they're not happy, then everyone feels like they're walking on eggshells. This time, my dad was in a really good mood, and showed us pictures from his latest vacation to Dubai and India (Kerala, Delhi, and Bombay), including numerous cousins and second cousins and so forth whom I've never met but are apparently incredibly successful lawyers or something.

My dad finally sold his stupid Quizno's franchise, which was a retarded idea to begin with, in my opinion, especially during his retirement, for God's sake. Now he's back to just consulting (he used to be an electronics engineer/systems analyst) and semi-retirement. So I think that's probably made him much happier, and as a result, our visit was far less awkward than usual. AND, he actually spent a fair amount of time asking me about my writing projects and apparently also listening to the answers, which is amazing. I was floored by that part. Usually he asks questions but then interrupts me when I'm halfway through the answer. So I guess he's calming down a little.

Anyhoo, I seriously need to get back to blogging regularly, and I still owe y'all pictures of the addition, with the press moved into the studio and everything. I swear, it'll be soon...

2 comments:

TadMack said...

Heh. Every time I hear the words "Inland Empire" I'm reminded of Keenan, a guy I met a Mills, who set a story there... and NO ONE in our entire class knew where it was. Not Micheline, not Tara, not Pancha, not anyone. It was HILARIOUS, and he was SO FREAKING DISGUSTED with us provincial little Nor-Cal nerds. At least now people know what the O.C. is in theory, if not what those letters stand for...

So the stepsister you chatted with isn't THE stepsister, right?

a. fortis said...

I remember Keenan--vaguely, anyway. I'm pretty sure we talked about being from the Inland Empire--he might have been from Riverside, come to think of it.

And no, THE sister is actually a half-sister, related to me through my dad. The stepsister I chatted with this weekend is my stepmom's daughter from a prior marriage. I also have FOUR stepsisters who are my stepdad's daughters. My family is a ridiculously large tangled mess.