All I want to do today is crawl back into bed. It's a good thing this is a three day weekend, because I need it. (And because paid holidays are the best thing ever invented.) It's summertime in Fairbanks, and there's everything to do. On top of all of the usual life things (chores, work, etc.) there's something going on pretty much every evening. There have been about five birthdays in the last week amongst our circle of friends, plus BBQs, going out to restaurants for dinner, movies, etc. And softball. Shane and I are playing on two separate nights (his are on Thursdays, mine are on Fridays) with two games each night. That adds a lot to the week. And when we're not doing all of this? Frolf. They've set up a frisbee golf course on campus that's actually pretty nice. So we'll grab the dog and go with friends. I don't play (I'm terrible and it just gets frustrating), but I hold onto the dog and she loves the walk and the people. (I sometimes wonder if this is the kind of thing she thinks we do all day while we're gone.) We get home and she's absolutely exhausted and overheated, but very happy.
It's been such a nice, early summer so far. We've had several days already when it's gotten up to at least 75. I planted my garden last weekend, and realized that it was over three weeks earlier than I planted last year. Not only that, but it's warm enough that I felt comfortable enough to plant everything outside, not just in boxes to bring them in at night if it gets cold. Because it's not getting that cold. Crazy. It was almost July last year before I stopped brining my zucchinis inside at night.
Of course, the bad part of all of this is that we're getting eaten by mosquitoes. I am a slayer of bugs, but there are just too many of them. The other night I slept poorly because I was so itchy, and I finally woke up because there were some that were getting me in my sleep. Ick.
Also, there's the constant threat of wildfires. Last year we had over 3 million acres of the state catch fire, most of it around Fairbanks. (It actually surrounded the town, so whatever way the wind blew it blew smoke into town. Miserable.) We're hoping it won't be so smoky this summer, but it's been such a dry year that it could be even worse. It's dry enough that Noyes Slough has grass growing in it, and people who've lived here all their lives say they've never seen that before. The fire that was in Nenana last summer also was never fully extinguished, it just smoldered under the snow in the bogs all winter. As soon as everything warmed up, it popped out again. I'm hoping that because we've had some summer thunder showers (short ones--yesterday's lasted maybe ten minutes) it will keep the threat of fires down. I just want these little storms to keep coming.
Last night we saw "Prince of Persia", the midnight showing. Of course, this morning I'm paying for only having gotten five and a half hours of sleep, but I'm thinking it was worth it. I was expecting a movie that wasn't so great, but I liked it. There were a few parts that were simply silly ("The shit has hit the fan, but this is the perfect moment for a long lean-in for a kiss that doesn't happen!") but for the most part it was fun. Shane got annoyed with some of the cheesy one-liners, but he enjoyed it too.
As a group, a bunch of us decided to go out to dinner on Wednesday nights. The deal is, we draw a name from a hat, and then that person chooses a restaurant in Fairbanks that they have never been to, and we all go there. And dress up for it, no matter where we go. Ricky was the first one chosen, and he picked The Vallata. It's one of the pricier restaurants in town, and I'd never been there either. Probably won't go there again. The food was good, don't get me wrong. But a basic plate of pasta (with just butter and parmesan cheese) was $13. I got fettucini alfredo with chicken and garlic and it was over $20. Yowza! When we all sat down (and there were twelve of us--missing a few people who couldn't make it) everyone opened the menu and sucked in a breath, trying to figure out what would be good but wouldn't hurt the wallet too much. (People were joking, "Yeah, um, I've never been to Carl's Jr. ...") With such a big party, the waitress got an auto gratuity, and she used that. Poor Adam got the worst service I've ever seen anyone get. Apparently, he was her RA one year when she lived in the dorms. He didn't remember her, and he couldn't think of anything he had done to deserve such animosity, but she was a bitch to him. She almost "forgot" to take his order (and interrupted him to say sarcastically that when he was an RA he'd been a delight), didn't put croutons on his salad, and when he asked for bread she said, "No, it's in the oven so you'll have to wait." It came 20 minutes later, cold. Wow. He really should have spoken to the manager about that, because that's ridiculous that she was taking advantage of the auto grat to be so mean. We left her exactly the amount on the bill, right down to the $.20. And seriously? He was an RA over five years go. Get over it, whatever it was. Shane and I were not his biggest fans for a long time, but he's grown up a lot and he's a really nice, funny guy now. I felt so bad for him. Eric's suggestion was, "You know what you should do? Wait until she gets off work, and then kill her." Lol.