Friday, November 23, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving! Also, First Blog Post!

Hi! My name is Rowan. This is my brand new blog, launching as the holiday season approaches with alarming speed and ferocity. Actually I guess it started yesterday, during Thanksgiving.

I was not expecting to enjoy my Thanksgiving. We were driving up to my dad's cousin Paula in Yucca Valley to spend the holiday with her, her husband Elvin, and her parents. I'm a teenager and I was the only person under 50 in the house.

A little background: Paula is, as I said, Dad's cousin. Since my dad's parents are dead and my mom's live in Texas, Paula likes to say that she's my surrogate grandmother. She's really sweet and a lot of fun to be around. I don't see her very often so I'd kind of forgotten how much fun she is to talk to. Elvin, her husband, is a nice guy too although I don't know him very well. I don't know Ruth and Stewart well either, having seen them a total of maybe four times in my life.

Paula had made most of the meal, with my mom bringing a quinoa (keen-wha) dish and desert. The quinoa was partly for Dad, as were the gluten-free brownies, because Dad is gluten-intolerant. He's also a bit of a health fanatic, but more on that later.

It was a really good meal. Dad and I got a kick out of the fact that Paula had made Waldorf salad. Any Fawlty Towers fans will know why. I discovered that I prefer dressing to stuffing and mashed-up cranberries to the weird gelatinous ones that come out of a can.

Did you know, by the way, that roadrunners are carnivorous? I certainly didn't. Elvin grossed my mom and me out by telling us about how they hunt little birds in the backyard. They'll lie in wait and then drag their victim off and eat it right there. Mom apparently knew that they would eat roadkill. I was totally surprised by the whole thing. I shall never look at the Roadrunner and Wile E. Coyote the same way again. O.O

After Paula and Mom and I finished doing dishes, I went out in their back yard to look around. The backyard was pretty much this large expanse of dirt with a lot of cacti growing in it. This is the desert. Some of the cacti look really, really weird. They're flat and spiky and they look like mutant Mickey Mouses (Mickey Mice?) forcing their way out of the ground. Seriously, picture the top of a Mickey Mouse head with thorns and two or three deformed extra ears. Totally scary.

While I was out there, I learned the hard way not to walk in between a pencil cactus and a silver cactus. There I am, trying to stroll in between them, and suddenly--bam! I've got this inch-and-a-half long thorn stuck in my leg. It didn't bleed, but it hurt quite a bit, especially when I sat down and yanked it out. I still have it taped in my diary.

Elvin had this story about how once he fell straight into some kind of big, scary cactus. He had thorns stuck all down his leg. He was wearing these big army-type boots too and the thorns went straight through the soles. I kid you not--the things punctured the soles of boots.

I was a lot more careful after that.

Have you ever seen a Joshua tree against the sky?

That's not quite what it looked like, but it's close. They're very weird and cool looking, like aliens that are going to reach out and grab you at any moment. I got to see a few before we left.

Sorry to end this so abruptly, but my dad and I want to watch a Sherlock so I have to go. He hasn't seen the last one of Season 2 yet! Oh boy...he is so going to cry...

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