The sun came out again yesterday and in two days we've had two of the most spectacular sunsets in recent memory.
We survived the week of rain quite nicely. I actually rather enjoyed the gray and wet and stay-in-bed days, although I did feel like my toes might begin to mold if it went on much longer. It was a nice week for heavy winter food like pot roast, and since Not Your Average Blogger was home, that's what he made and I think I gained half a ton.
The high point for me, though, was that apparently my efforts at grading and graveling the flower bed have paid off in at least one respect: The basement didn't flood.
On the work front, I went to a design seminar with Edward Tufte. It was ... interesting. The man is clearly a genius, and much of what he said was wonderfully, refreshingly clear-eyed common sense. But it was also largely useless, because he lives in a rarefied atmosphere where you can do things like hand out a worksheet, tell people to read it, ask if they have questions, and that's your meeting. Here on Planet Real World, the instruction to "give a presentation" implies something a bit more talky and hand-held and far less self-directed, and deviating from that expectation might be less than advisable.
Tufte, like many geniuses, is also kind of a dick. He sniffed at the average IQ of those who frequent ESPN.com, he seemed inordinately fond of the word "idiot," and at one point compared Dick Cheney to "a volcano of evil." I mean, really? We're still picking on Dick Cheney? Can't we update the material a little? Plus, much of the afternoon was spent on a weird tangent regarding etiquette—"respect your audience" (not sure he practiced that bit of preaching) and "if you find no value in what's being said, you can always walk out." (except when you can't, of course.)
As I said: interesting.
NYAB took the week off between the end of his old job and the start of his new one and worked assiduously on his book. I think he rather enjoyed it. NYAB has started his new job and has come home cheerful if tired, so that's nice.
The Young Prince had a particularly good week at school; something has motivated him to be more useful and he has earned himself a slew of Good Citizenship cards for listening attentively, helping clean classrooms, and so on. I don't know what prompted this, but I'm delighted by it and hope it continues. (Perhaps I should figure out some similar system to get him to work on his penmanship.) In another successful outing, he recorded his music lessons, and I was surprised by how interesting it was to listen to them. I have a much clearer idea now of how both teachers approach him and what they are trying to accomplish. Always a good thing.
The main weekend event was that the YP and I left NYAB to work on his book and went to see The Walk, which was visually breathtaking. I don't know what to call it. Cinematography? CGI? Whatever, it was stunning. Your stomach will flop in spots if you have any issue with heights whatsoever. (I could have done without the obligatory yaps that artists must be anarchists, but into each film a little pandering must fall, I suppose.) The YP also enjoyed the soundtrack, though I found that purely secondary.
The only fly in our ointment was we found out that the YP's psychiatrist may be going out of our health plan network. This is not a particularly big deal in and of itself; I like her, but not enough to pay out-of-network prices if I have an alternative. I'm just hoping I can avoid the hassle of searching for a new doctor and going through what is probably an inevitable dance of Everything You've Done Up to Now Is Wrong and Let's Change Everything Because Now I'm in Charge.
This weekend we are off to a fall festival in the mountains. I'm hoping autumn is a bit farther along up there and I will manage to snap a few good photos, mixed in with the requisite shopping, eating, and hiking.