We had a BBQ last night for Lihp and Elocin (not their real names) who moved to Oregon about a year ago. This was a chance for a number of friends to get together and reminisce about old times, eat some food, and, as it turned out, shiver.
Mrs Notthat and I set up almost a dozen tables in the backyard. This was after spending a couple of days forcing the backyard to recover from the ravages of a brutal winter. (Note the absurdly optimistic use of umbrellas for shade. Little did we know that we would shortly be considering burning those umbrellas for heat.)
From the backyard looking up onto the deck, which hasn't looked this organized since last fall.
A few brave souls tried eating outside early on, but the cold wind quickly made this a losing proposition. In the end, most of the tables we had scientifically positioned for ease of use and maximum efficiency were never touched, and we all headed inside.
Most of the women crowded around the dining room table...
...while most of the men stood in the kitchen.
One of the couples brought their five-year-old daughter Eisoj (not her real name either - one of the funniest moments of the evening was Riley charging through the living room calling "Where's that girl? Hey girl!" We pointed to Darci and he said "That's not the girl - that's Darci."). Eisoj and the grandkids got along very well, and while they were determined to cover the floor with every toy or toy-like thing they could find, they also cleaned up the mess later (I suspect with lots of help).
I love the expression on The Boy's face (that's a watermelon rind in his mouth) when Riley came running through the living room trying to wear a recently emptied toy container as a hat.
And of course Idiot Dog Teddy loved all the attention. A few guests were a little nervous around him, but most loved how well behaved he was. For his part, IDT was disappointed since outdoor eating usually means lots of small, unguarded treasures to eat. You just don't get those sorts of opportunities indoors (unless lots of kids are involved).
The evening turned out fine. I could have cooked more meat (latecomers were forced to survive on the salads) and the weather could have cooperated at least a little bit, but everyone had a good time and there was never a need to call the police.
That's it - move along...