Spent the last two weeks up at a friend's, visiting. What do you do when you have weeks instead of hours at hand? Well, first, massive organization and cleaning, including trying to diagnose and repair both vacuum cleaners. Second, cooking - my fiance and I conspired to put a few pounds on our favorite bachelor by making tasty dinners and leaving leftovers in meal-sized portions in the fridge. Third, baking - I left several loaves in various stages of attacked by hungry men on the counter and placed several in the freezer to be discovered later. The blackberry-lemon muffins, I fear, won't make it that far. Fourth, entertaining the cat - we spent no few hours exploring the backyard, playing "kill the laser dot", or tag. Fifth, sprawl on a comfortable surface reading things from their bookshelves.
Oh, yes, and getting photos taken, shooting roughly fifteen different kinds of guns, playing with ballistic gelatin, meeting the strangest fun people, going to a gun show, chatting with models, and sleeping under a big light diffuser on the studio floor. But then, that's a given when it's Oleg Volk's house, isn't it? You never know just who is going to be polishing off the beer bread or turning up half-frozen from a photo shoot and delighted by homemade hot chocolate and fresh-baked cookies while crowded 'round the computer setup to see the raw images. And if you can't find a laser pointer for the cat who's batting at the ties to the bathrobe, there's always a revolver with crimson trace grips around somewhere (just unload the gun, leave the cylinder hanging out, and don't muzzle anyone besides the wildly enthusiastic cat).
You don't have to like having your picture taken to be a friend with a photographer, and you'll still get an enthusiastic hug for the lasagna all the same. You don't have to know a lot about guns to hang out with a gun-nuttery crowd; they'll be delighted to veer from debating esoteric points of military history or ballistics to praising the venison stew for dinner. Besides, they usually have other interesting hobbies that are just as fun to learn about when you tire of this caliber versus that thingie hanging off a rail, amusing stories, and the men can be counted on to be polite gentlemen, even when I'm imitating a modern zombie in search of caffeine at too-bright in the morning.
Miss him already - haven't even unpacked yet, and though the cat in my lap is most insistent I catch up on two weeks missed scritching (I'm not fooled - the neighbors have been feeding and petting her, no matter what she claims), I keep expecting Oleg to come thumping down the stairs in search of food, tea, or just someone to share the latest amusement with. It was a good vacation - we needed the break. I just wish I could have gotten a little more order imposed on the creeping chaos, and a few more pounds on him. By the last few days, I had given up a quarter of the counter to various fired and unfired munitions, and the top of one of the food storage bins was becoming a default handgun abandonment point. (In order to peel potatoes, first check that the guns are safe...)