Our [rental] house is a very, very fine house.  Wait for it . . .  yes!  Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.

Except it has a buffalo skull and a shot gun over the fireplace.  A gun?  a GUN?  A GUN?  Omigod, that thing could kill a person!!!

More about this later, but first:

Thursday was a crazy day.  I kept thinking this sounds like a movie, “A Boy, His Friends, Their Dogs, A Cousin and Assorted Adults”.  Our dear friends and their kids and their two chihuahuas were still without power after Hurricane.  5 DAYS.  Camping out at home cannot be that much fun even if you are outdoorsy people like they are.  (And if you are an indoorsy person like me, a minute in suburbia is too much contact with nature.)

We told our friends to pack up everything in the car and come over.  We were happy to have them.  If their power hadn’t come on while they were over on Thursday, we insisted that they would stay with us through the weekend.

We helped unload the car when they arrived.  In came the ice chest that they have been schlepping around with their perishables, as well as non-perishables that no Jew could live without: garlic, onions and antacids.  They stopped off at a farmer’s market, so when they walked in, one said in way so reminiscent of my grandparents, “we brought such a sweet melon, we should eat it right away!!”  And the stuff kept coming:  the beds for the dogs, the beach and swim gear. . . It was amazing.  It reminded me of when my family used to pack up to go to our weekend house, and my father would look at all of the stuff and say, “we could travel to Europe for six months with less!”

Once the unpacking was complete, I offered alcohol, homemade potato salad (delicious, really), or whatever else would make the adults calm and happy.  They just wanted to turn on and off the lights and keep flushing the toilets.  After five days, this woooosh sound is apparently as soothing as waves at the beach.

Then our nephew and sister-in-law came over.  Three young boys in one house for a “play date”.  Three boys looking longingly at the rifle.  Testosterone on full display.

Oy, Oy, Oy, Oy, Oy, Oy,  “It’s for show”.  “It doesn’t fire.”  “It is ORNAMENTAL.”

That’s what these boys hear from an overabundance of mothers and an absence of fathers.  Do they believe us?  They better, else the rifle will be the least of their worries.  The boys know this but can’t help but focus on the real rifle that we say is ornamental.  Let me take a moment to reflect on the little sleep I have gotten knowing there is a gun in the house. I need another vacation in a Quaker commune to make up for this.

Power was restored in our friends’ house, so we packed EVERYTHING back into the car.  What a monumental task.  It jogged another memory of my Dad’s also telling the doormen of our apartment building that we weren’t really going away only for a weekend; we were actually moving out west to start a farm but since we don’t know anything about farming, we needed to bring a year’s worth of food.

Friday was a relaxing day.  SNOBFOB (see prior blogs about the Alternate View) invited us over for dinner at her house in the area.  What a fabulous, relaxing evening.  SOS (our son, source of sanity) thinks SNOBFOB is awesome and loved looking at the moon and stars from her deck.  He also loved that SNOBFOB let him explore the house.  And a specially made cheeseburger, potato chips and vanilla ice cream just made a little boy soooo happy.  “E-Mom, I like your friends.”  “Thanks, buddy.”  “We can go back tomorrow if you like.”  “Buddy, we have to wait for an invitation first.”  “But [SNOBFOB] said we could come over any time!!”  “Dude, we are going to bask in the glow of having been good guests for a little while.”  “Mommy, what is E-Mom talking about?”

Saturday, another chill out day.  The pool.  The beach.  The pool.  Rest hour after lunch.  The pool.

We had our nephew, POB’s (partner of blogger’s) sister and POB’s father over for dinner.  Again, three little boys over, although the 84 year-old one was slow moving and just wanted to watch the Mets game.  The two boys played in the pool before dinner. And we played basketball in the driveway.  So much fun.  POB got it on tape and she promised me that there is no footage of my slightly thickening waistline.

It was a lovely day.  The COB (colleague of blogger) sent me a message on Facebook making sure I knew that a pile of stuff awaited me upon my return.  The COB was being funny and I got the humor.  Still, I logged off Facebook.

Today is our last full day here. . . .