At least, so it seemed to me, as 17 guests converged upon the house formerly known as Carolyn’s. 🙂 Much mingling and chatter, with several jokes about damaging furniture and doing graffiti (in order to leave a “mark”), tours of the “grounds” (!), good music, and I’m pretty sure no one left hungry. 🙂
Of those who could attend, most were COM-folk,
Of those who could attend, most were COM-folk, with the notable addition of Arturo (SOM) and his wife Maria (Food Science) ~ who both got rave reviews for the yummy potato salad and just generally being “sweet” for helping out, and Cata (Hospitality) and his sweetie Camelia (who drank half of my Honey Raspberry “No Whining” beer ~ the nerve!.
The burgers and dogs seemed a bit overdone to me, but I had to get them on the still-slightly-too-hot fire because hungry folks started to loom around me. Fortunately, the growling stomachs did not transform into an unruly horde, and Maria’s advice to just serve until the food ran out effectively countered my desire to cross-check the list of who had actually RSVP’d with their preferred choice of main dish. ! Did I mention that my flatties seem to think I have a few control issues? 🙂
Everyone seemed to be engaged, talking with or listening to someone most of the time. Art might have suffered a bit, but it sure was nice that Andrea was able to drop by for awhile (thanks for playing along, Art!) John, Olga’s husband, didn’t seem to miss a beat, and gosh – Olga’s an inspiration. She’s two years DONE with her phd and back at UMass as faculty in the Judeaic/Eastern-something Studies program.
I did notice a few of the new cohorters being perhaps a bit more quiet, but actually I was impressed by how easily everyone seemed to fit right in. Chris (fellow pyro) kept me company by the grill for awhile, Erin didn’t miss a beat telling me that my chef’s outfit was “me”, Sreela is busy trying to redeem herself for communicating with Joanna as her “buddy” instead of me (did I say she thought my first couple of emails to her ~ seeking to make contact ~ were porn? Joanna, however, the buddy-thief, has no such excuse….) 😉
Qiao also fit right in, even though we were boycotted (nationality-cotted?) by all the rest of the Chinese. 🙁 What’s UP with THAT?! Qiao even went for cheese on her burger (or was it a portobello?) in the true spirit of cross-cultural adventure. 🙂
David, missing-in-action last semester, returned as a newlywed with Nora, and only made one height joke about Hunju driving (CAN she see over the steering wheel? ~ yes yes of course she can, AND she survived MY brutal instruction so you KNOW she has to be a good driver now!)
After all the students left, Sue stayed to play Scrabble with me and my flatties. She beat Matt (perhaps because she kept trying to steal his turn?!), but we were all smoked by Kirsten, who teased me about being up past my bedtime. Those flatties definitely had a bonding experience over this party-thing. Not only did the alternation between deep-breathing exercises and humoring (pacifying?) me establish a basis for connection, they’re already in cahoots to persuade me to reduce the rent. But I have to say, cleaning and re-arranging the kitchen was a great way to get to know each other…the secrets that were told!
If all goes as planned, the next party will be around or about the beginning of October. 🙂