June was Pramas's 40th birthday. I threw him a party, saw a bunch of old friends and had a really nice time. The following week I went to Portland and camped out at an RV park in my mother's RV so Kate could attend Rock Band Camp for Girls. I videoed Kate's performance from the side of the stage but when I pulled it off the FLIP there was no sound (though there is sound if viewed on the camera) so I've got to figure out what's up with that so I can post the video of her band rockin' out. But I haven't yet.
In July I hosted a friend's 13-year-old son for a week. He's a total gamer and within minutes of his arrival he and Kate were talking Star Trek (or was it Star Wars?) and Xbox. We visited the EMP and the Sci-Fi Museum (which had a bonus Jim Henson exhibit going on), visited Starbucks (the kid likes mochas), stopped at Golden Age Collectibles, introduced him to sushi, and culminated with a visit to the Microsoft Game Studio. I tried to organize a visit to Wizards of the Coast but despite a bunch of advanced notice and call-outs to multiple people there we just weren't able to make that happen, but my friends at Microsoft more than made up for it with the tour they gave the kids of the Game Studio. Kate then went on a week-long trip to Hawaii with her dad and Pramas and I hunkered down to get some work done before GenCon.
My brother returned from his stint doing medical work in Haiti and suggested that we try to go up to Minnesota together to visit my grandpa (who turned 92 this year) with our dad. I was able to book my GenCon flight through Minneapolis to make this happen and it was a really lovely time. The weather was good, the rest of the family golfed (or followed along in a cart) and I got lots of walking in on the golf courses and great face time with the family. It also took my mind off the fact that Ropecon 2009 was going on. Instead I rolled into GenCon feeling as relaxed and happy as I've been in years. Where my brother and I really did not get along as children and I moved in with my dad in 10th grade while he continued to live with my mom, we've grown up and grown into a much happier relationship and I'm really enjoying knowing him as an adult after being either at odds or separated from each other for so many years. Valuable stuff.
August gave way to September and PAX here in Seattle. I attended again this year and reconnected with many good friends from the game industry that I don't get to see nearly enough of. I saw good friends who have moved away for computer jobs and pen-and-paper designers who otherwise don't have reason to visit Seattle. My most popular friends were hard or impossible to track down or only able to speak to us in passing and I left wishing the event had been a couple of days longer so I could have seen more but for me this year was totally about the people and largely not about the content of the event. Sadly, I was also one of the hundreds of people who caught the "PAXflu" and lost more than a week to laying around the house coughing, sniffling, and napping feverishly. I got over the worst of it just in time to head down to Portland to help my mom out as she underwent and recovered from nasal surgery. Even now I still have a very slight cough that pops up and it's been three weeks since the onset of my symptoms. Tomorrow I'll write up that trip in more detail.
That brings us to the beginning of Fall. Kate started back to school for her eighth grade year while I was down with the flu, her last year at Orca. Pramas and I will be celebrating our 8th wedding anniversary in a couple of days, the bronze anniversary Google tells me. This weekend is the annual Green Ronin summit and the bulk of the boys will be arriving over the course of the day Thursday. The following weekend is the Diamond/Alliance open house in Baltimore which I'll be traveling to this year and by the time I finish that we'll be well into October and less than a month out from my 40th birthday. This is the year that FIVE of the Green Ronins turned 40 with me closing out the pack as the last of the year. It's also a year that has me feeling like a stone skipping across a pond, spinning along with an external momentum and only briefly coming into contact with the real "surface" of my life.
More later, for now I must sleep.