Charleston and a Christmas quaff with Reid …

There comes a point when you sit at a bar with your children and it dawns on you that they’re old enough to consume adult beverages. Of course, Reid had his first beer in my presence when he was 16 at a bar in Australia. The latest father-son imbibing happened over the Christmas week in Charleston. The lad still knows how to handle a quaff, or two.


December 30, 2014

Ellen/Reid: It was a great couple of weeks with you guys. That’s how the holidays ought to be celebrated. Thanks for the kayak fishing-related stuff. It’s really all that I wanted. Now it’s time for the fake tree to be disassembled and head back into its cardboard box and closet for another year.

Reid, I’m still sorry about the lack of redfish for you. Man, that Todd just slammed them and part of that is on me for not knowing more about baits, finger mullet in particular.

But that’s why they make plane tickets; we can always try again and again. I’m glad you liked your time on the water, last Saturday excepted. We’ve just had a total bust with guides although I think

The redfish that got away from Reid - snagged, actually - was a behemoth.

The redfish that got away from Reid – snagged, actually – was a behemoth.

Next time we'll return with Cap'n Trip ( at the helm. He's a great guide.

Next time we’ll return with Cap’n Tripp ( at the helm. He’s a great guide.

Cap’n Tripp will be a better option for us next time. He knows what he’s doing. If we had taken him, surely you would have caught the lunkers. Charleston sure was fun. It’s always crowded like that. There’s got to be a lot more to it beyond the touristy areas along Bay, Market and Meeting streets. Reid, you sure got the best of the weather. It was gorgeous almost the whole time.

It is just amazing to see Emma’s spurt in growth and language. She’s a little person now (yeah, a little stinker sometimes) but she is so on top of things and expressive. I often wonder how it is kids come by language, how they learn it and pick it up. It’s good that you and Tim, Ellen, haven’t let her veg in front of the TV since that she would become, a veg. It keeps her little mind active. I need to pick up one of those Where’s Waldo books since my Waldo finding skills are apparently in very, very short supply. Maybe I need new glasses. Emma looked at me like ‘C’mon, papa, what’s wrong with you? Find the guy already.’

Cooking is half the fun although Tim and I will forever have the fry vs. nuke argument on bacon. On his turf it’s the fry pan, on mine it’ll be four minutes on high in the micro-nuker. I thought our steaks were really good even though it’d been a while since the grill had seen any duty. Those last minute Christmas cookies were a good idea, Reid, and Ellen,

Emmas is eminently pleased with the results of her first try at icing cookies.

Emma is eminently pleased with the results of her first try at icing cookies.

thanks for pushing me to do another batch for Emma after the first round got really over-toasted to the point of blackness. It was fun to watch her attempt at icing. She was just so proud of her handiwork. Santa no doubt found that her results still tasted good.

I guess my next foray up North will be in April for the impending birth of the next little granddaughter. Reid, I’ll cruise through Chicago first and impose on you and Liz for one night. The plan is then to stop up in Des Moines and/or suburban Des Moines to look for a place. I’d really like to find something that has some sense of style rather than be slapped together. That’s what’s nice about what I have now; a great location and a sense of style. Too bad they don’t build with more brick in the Midwest. I’ve gotten used to it down in these parts. How long I idle in Des Moines is in part dependent on the birth; Ellen, it could also be that I don’t arrive for the birth itself since you guys will be up to your eyeballs in all the commotion. Your mom and Nancy likely have first dibs on doting on the new child. I don’t mind being there a bit afterward once things have settled down somewhat (‘settled down’ might be an impossibility for expanded families). You tell me what works best for you.

I’ve volunteering at a recycling event this morning in Uptown just before the Belk Bowl between Louisville and Georgia. Hopefully the rain will stop before the game starts. The other big football news is the Panthers, who defied the odds by winning four straight at the end of the season after most people, me included, wrote them off. It still doesn’t mean, though, that I want to attend the games in person. TV works just fine. Thanks, too, Reid, for setting me up on NetFlix. Incredible.

Love, Dad


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