Returned from a trip to see the spouse’s relatives, and it was probably the most pleasant one in memory. At my mother-in-law’s, her mother came for dinner, and it was so great to see the kids both connect to someone 3 generations away. Other than my mom’s mom, I didn’t really know any grandparents, and I never really appreciated old people (no euphemisms here) until fairly recently. My kids are a lot different, and both are really interested in all the family history they can get. Both are a lot more tapped into heritage than I ever was, and it’s nice to see.

On the spouse’s paternal side, I had a great time with my father-in-law and various other Perrin relatives at a surprise party for his wife. I really hate parties. Very few remember or know how shy I was as a kid, when about the worst possible thing my parents could subject me to was a big group of people. But if you’re going to survive on any social level in NYC, you gotta be able to work a room, so I learned a long time ago how to put on a game face, suck it up, and get my small talk on. Of course, that takes a lot more courage now that I can’t fortify myself with Chardonnay. But I wouldn’t trade it, and it sure is nice to wake up in the morning and not stress out over how much of an asshole I was the night before

In any event, this is my first visit with the F.i.L. stone cold sober, and he looks great that way. We couldn’t spend much time with him and his wife this visit, but I’m really looking forward to the next time.

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