What's New? 2006-08-20

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What's New? 2006-08-20

 Tuesday 29 August 2006
  Burning Man 2006 We're off to Burning Man 2006!

We've rented an RV, packed us (and another family) therein, and we're heading to the desert for yet another installment of America's Strangest Family Vacations. There's Kidsville, with trampolines and home-made ice cream, there's incredible art and music and costumes and food, and there's the four of us!

See you sometime next month!

 Monday 28 August 2006
  Today is Lila's first day of school! She's so excited. She's been ready for so many years. Clothes set out last night, backpacks loaded with lunches and pencils, with a good breakfast aboard, the entire family heads out to school this morning. We park a half-block away. The kids clamber out, leading the way in a rush.

Lila & Isaac walking to school

On the playground the parents check out into which classes their kids have been placed. Isaac seems to be with most of the kids he likes; great for him. Lila is getting along with the kids in her class line...

list of classmates

We got here early so the kids could play and meet their classmates. Isaac takes advantage of the time by climbing on the play structure. New backpack; he still needs new shoes. He's got some wide feet.

Isaac on the play structure

The hand-bell is rung, and the kids line up with their classes. Here's Lila, leading the way. That is one happy girl. This morning, upon waking, I heard

Lila: Papa! I've been waiting for this day all of my life!

Lila leads her class

Here's a panoramic scene of the morning line-ups. Happy school year, y'all!

George Peabody morning scene
 Saturday 26 August 2006
  This is turning out to be a downtown Saturday. First of all, we're finally heading out to Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition at the Metreon. I say "finally" because Isaac has been devouring absolutely everything about the RMS Titanic that he's been able to find across several libraries, regardless of vocabulary level. It's been great, albeit morbid.

Here's a happy, happy kid standing in front of the huge model of the RMS Titanic that is just outside of the exhibit (on the fourth floor of the Metreon, where the Wild Thing exhibit stood for so many years).

Isaac with RMS Titanic model

Along with Bubbie and Zadie, "Aunt Pamela" and her friend Shirley (standing near the Grand Staircase) came along with us this morning.

Pamela & Shirley near the RMS Titanic grand staircase

Here's the coup de show, a 15-ton portion of hull. It's hard to see from this photo, but the porthole glass is unbelievably thick. (We're not supposed to take any photos of the artifacts, presumably to increase sales of the souvenir books, a fact I learned after snapping this. Meh.)

close-up RMS Titanic wall fragment

For the second time in less weeks we're back at Buca di Beppo. From left, it's Rose, Alan, Aunt Pamela's friend, Pamela, Lila, Shirley, and just to the left of the papal statue, a blurry Zadie taking a photo of me.

Buca de Beppo

Cousins Isaac and Matthew have an uproarious time. My kid sure is the class clown! Everyone seems to have found something enticing to eat.

Isaac & Matthew

Stuffed, in dire need of movement, we go for a walk. Near-by, at Yerba Buena playground, Lila catches a jacket which I've tossed to her. Then she turns around, runs up the spiral staircase to the highest slide, sits on the jacket, and screams down to us. Repeat a few dozen times.

Lila at Yerba Buena playground

Here's the first photo I've taken with my new cell phone, the Motorola RAZR v3. Yeah, that's my Burning Man haircut. Lila decided last night that it was time.

 Friday 25 August 2006
  Across the bay, in Piedmont, live our friends Tamara and Ken. She's a music teacher and a cook extraordinaire; he's a runner and computer geek. Her invitations for Sabbath dinners are always an occasion for rejoicing. We got one, we're there, and here's Tamara with Lila and Lolly. They're lighting the candles and saying the bracha (prayer). See the matchbox in Tamara's hand?

Tamara with Lila and Lolly
 Monday 21 August 2006
  One of the things I love about Burning Man is the decoration of all my Ranger gear. This is the scene on our nook table before the event: a borrowed sewing machine, reflective squares and patches, and the essential cup of coffee (in the bottom left).

pre-Burning Man sewing scene

Here's "Aunt Pamela" with Lila, explaining how to use the gift of a flower press.

Lila & Pamela w/ flower press

After a good run of practice, Isaac is awarded his Hapkido orange belt (by Mssrs. Carlo Valero and Jason Nuygen). He's been going about three times a week, and he took three weeks off this summer, so this last three weeks of intense practice was amply rewarded.

Isaac gets his Hapkido orange belt

Here's the whole family posing with the newly-awarded orange belt. Yea, Isaac! We are so proud of you.

the whole Hapkido family

One of our family traditions is having the child receiving the new belt choose the dinner location. Isaac wanted Benihana, in Japantown. Lila, however, really wanted soba at Mifune, across the way. Dziadziu also wanted soba, so the two of them went one way (seen here)...

Lila & Dziadziu at

... while the rest of us went the other way. Mifune is fast, so after a short while the two of them joined the rest of us (just in time for dessert).

Isaac & Zofia at Benihana
 Sunday 20 August 2006
  After burritos at Pancho Villa, we notice that the playground around the corner, on Hoff Street. Isaac and Lila quickly make friends with the kids already playing there, and it's non-stop screaming and taking of turns until the sun sets (and the temperature drops).

Mission playground

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