August 23, 1996 (#14) (and before ...)

I was sitting on a deck chair contemplating the monstrous monotony of the setting sun (gin makes me somewhat depressive) when the ever charming and elegant Fernando told me that a call was waiting inside. It turns out that an old acquaintance of mine, Bitsy from La Jolla (hi Bitsy, I'm sure you'll be out of the Junior League now! Sorry love, but that latest cookbook was completely untested recipes). Well, Miss Bits was all churned up because she knew someone who knew someone who knew something and so on etc., and she wanted to know if I wanted to attend "the" convention.

As you might imagine, my undertaxed little steamers, my first reaction was negative. After all, the Republicans? Lancelot would have probably swam to shore to escape the shame and while I try so hard to love everyone, sometimes, I fear I must try harder and harder. At the instant I was about to decline, I saw the sun drop below the horizon, Abattoir was declaiming in Flemish to Charles or Fernando about some "quenelle" atrocity and I realized I needed a way out.

I accepted.

The next day which must have been Wednesday of the convention, I was ashore and bound for the airport where I boarded some lovely commercial airline and spent an enjoyable 4 or so hours conversing with a charming gentleman about the difficulties of finding a well-trained intelligent MBA in this glutted market. Goodness, who knew! Good thing he wasn't looking for a lawyer. Ouch, don't remind me. Really, no slight to the legally inclined, I adore lawyers, all except one particularly large Park Avenue firm whose more enervated partner is responsible for this whole oil rig debacle. But I am sure he means well, just wait til he gets my bill.

As expected, I digress but only because I have so much to say. Just edit at will tiny cherrystones, I never take offense.

I arrived in lovely San Diego, billed as the United States third largest city. Oh.

The weather was pleasant, the people I dealt with at the hotel were pleasant. (I did not accept the invitation to remain with Bitsy's family, but again, thank you so for asking). Bits had left my pass at the desk and I prepared myself for what was likely to be a very emotional evening. I rationalized that at least I was occupied and not sipping something staring at the sun again. I hate to be such a pickle, but I was simply out of my mind with boredom, so this seemed like a chance for some amusement.

Well, really, most of the evening was yammer, yammer, yammer while we were all waiting for the headliner. She arrived and let me tell every last one of you geoducks, that I, Trudy, beheld Liddy Dole within shooting distance. She was going off a mile a minute and giving those gracious non-acknowledgments to the little people in her and Robert's lives.

Well, so Liddy chose not to acknowedge me, as I said, I never take offense, but I think we may have passed each other here or there. But all this going on and on about inclusion and the rich diversity of the performers on the stage. There I sat among all these happy inclusive people who looked just like me, and suddenly I realized what was missing -- besides a good girdle and wrinkles -- me!

Now, I know, you're saying "Trudy, but they're Republicans, be careful" -- yes, I would agree. But remember, this is the self-proclaimed party of inclusion for all Americans! I have a birth certificate giving me certain rights (which actually have lately been up for discussion) and so I say all this talk of inclusion means include me-- and my canine and my Belgian.

After the performances were over, I rushed for my phone, placed a call to Abattoir, told him to vacate immediately and find a home for us in the suburbs. We were on a mission. He wondered about Fernando and Charles, and I told him to leave them as they came with the rig. He also wondered about the availability of portobello mushrooms, but then I got a little short.

The rest of the two days in San Diego were a blur. Bob Dole spoke, but my seat was a bit out of the way this time and really, I couldn't focus. From some reports, I hear Bob had a much similar problem. We must all have had Republican fever -- hope we didn't get it from the Central Valley! Une plaisanterie, my silt-sifting littlenecks.

I rushed back to sea to pack up our belongings and almost left Lancelot in the launch when going ashore. I was a bit frazzled -- he is, after all, somewhat hard to lose. Abattoir had wired the directions to the new abode somewhere in the Ohio Valley something or another. A small town called Brookfield Meadow, or similar, 668 Springtime Circle or terrace or lane.

Let me just interject my heartfelt public thanks to Abattoir. Whose English has come along quite nicely and whose unborn children, although never likely to have the chance of becoming citizens even if born in the USA at this time (although it is unlikely Abattoir will procreate yet ...), will still be welcome and included in my home -- to the extent allowed by the homeowner's association. I can't wait for my first meeting! I might even shop at Dillard's.

An unlikely soldier for truth am I. Here, amongst under-developed trees and over-shrubbed split-level homes, I stand as a challenge to the Republican Convention Proclamation. On my front lawn every morning I cry out wrapped in a tasteful but not un-revealing peignoir --ostrich trimmed-- "INCLUDE THIS!". (Figuratively, my periwinkle activists, figuratively. The neighbors are usually still sleeping.) I'll adapt to a station wagon, I'll drink zinfandel, but you must include me in the PTA!

Oh yes, Abattoir -- thanks again love. Somewhere in your Flemglish you managed to purchase the perfect home for us all. I suspect you called the lawyers, but I will overlook it.

Lovely neighbors abound. I actually haven't met anyone except for the Christs, just next door. The day we arrived they brought over some warm oven baked bread. Must be a lovely family recipe, it's not very springy, but very flavorful. I hope to get to know them well, just because it will make me a little more secure knowing someone else is watching the house. Down the street are some Smiths (really!) and most everybody has a well-trimmed lawn except for the house right at the entrance to the subdivision, but I think they'll have to move soon as I don't think they are considered to fit in.

I am reminded of a business dinner I once attended in Dayton, Ohio. A group of us had been carrying on well into dessert, my side being from large urban areas, and their side mainly from Dayton. Finally, one of the women just turned to me and said in the nicest way, "You know, we don't have people like you in Dayton." Well my love, now you do and why don't you just stop by for a cup of coffee so we can really chat.

Maybe I'll join the country club -- I hear they have formal dances.