I'm in New York now, for the next couple of weeks. Of course, I have to work during the week, a normal 9 to 5:30 deal. But I still get nights and weekends, right? Sounds like my cell phone calling plan.
It's cold here, especially after Daytona Beach. Maybe I'll get used to it in a while, but for now I'm wearing two sweaters and surviving on gallons of hot tea.
Mom and Dad are doing just fine. The are being same as usual, except even more so. Dad keeps talking about moving to Russia once he reaches the retirement age. Mom keeps buying boxes to store stuff in (and she's got tons of stuff). The boxes are all different size, shape, and made of different materials. So there is a dizzying array of them all over the kitchen. Some are even double-stacked матрешка-style.
The house looks much better from the outside - the landscaping is almost all done now and there's a rock wall and a real lawn too. Most of the tools are now stored in a shed, instead of laying all over the yard. Of course, Dad wouldn't be himself if he wasn't walking around talking about how something or other is really poorly done and won't hold for another year all because nobody listens to his advice.
I spent last night at Masha's. Pasha went to Ohio for the weekend and Masha was afraid of staying in the house by herself. At first I was very skeptical and wanted to make fun of her. But after laying in the dark room late at night listening to the cracking and gurgling noises produced by their heating system, I stopped being so brave myself. It was a lot of fun though. First, we had a little party. I saw several of my old friends and met a couple of new people. In general, everybody seemed to have tons of good time, including Alisa who just couldn't stop giggling.
She's so funny now. She makes cute little faces and constantly wants to grab things (especially keys, bottles, forks). In a true Robin Hood fashion, she immediately gives her bounty away to anyone who happens to be next to her. She also likes to get her face dirty with whatever it is she's munching on - apples, bananas, strawberries, and little cookies. At some point yesterday her face was covered in minced foodstuff mixed generously with saliva. She crawled under the table and stood by me for a minute or two before I picked her up. When I did, her face was already clean, if a bit sticky. I didn't give it much thought until later that night when I noticed strange stains on my jeans and figured out that Alisa used them as a fancy napkin.
I wish I had pictures of her to put here, but I don't have any right now. But if you imagine a little girl with showlder-length reddish-blond hair, a pair of sparkling blue eyes, a little snubby nose, 8 teeth and a big smile, you'll get an idea.