I spent the past few days in Santa Fe, NM at a family reunion. Not the “ugh it’s uncle alfred” kind of reunion, but the kind where I thank my lucky stars for these relations all around. The postcard versions:

I babysat for the first time possibly ever, although I do have some teenage experience toddlersitting. The baby was good for the entire three hours, I got some tips on what babies like to do (hint, it’s not sitting) so we swam and danced and I tried to teach it to crawl. We’re not quite there yet.

The kids always have kid-specific activities at these reunions, which last year and this included a day of rock climbing. Since I totally climb now, I invited myself along. It was a chance to spend time with nieces and nephews and cousins, but I am not exactly a kid person. The real draw here was the I’ve-arrived badge of “going outside”. Climbing in the gym is one thing, but a step below the real thing. The real thing!! Well worth having to beg the van to play the quiet game at hour no. 5 of the kid activity.

One evening we went to an art gallery in town before going to dinner. I lost my pamphlets I’d collected of all the artists (see next paragraph) but there was a lot of inspiring art. I did not know acrylic could be so rich. Meanwhile the gallery attendant did not know that I am not rich, she saw me photographing my favorite piece and got me a fancy booklet with her “best price” (close to $11,000?!). Clothing myself from clearance sections can fool people I guess!

My only complaint about these things is not even a complaint. We tend to spend so much time with one another that the setting can get forgotten. So on our last night I joined my second-cousin-in-law for some unchoreographed adventuring, our busboy at dinner took us out to a house party, as in a house where a parent was out of town and the drinks were made to taste like anything but alcohol. Nothing too crazy, just a fun few hours of living a life I was too scared to want when I was their age.

 

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