The last couple days’ weather has reminded me how much I love living out in the Pacific Northwest. Last Saturday my aunt had a barbecue at Twanoh State Park. Despite the gray skies and rain, it was just a pretty awesome day. I have this thing with ambiance and atmospheric descriptions when it comes to how I recall events, but what can I say, that’s what captures me.

Gray skies and mist silhouetted trees.

It was cool out and gray. The picnic table was filled with food, but not the usual hamburgers and hot dogs. No, on the table were three different types of pancit, along with ginataan, palabok, bowls of fresh cut mangos, two rice cookers, and some other random Filipino dishes I’ve always shied from. The grills held salmon wrapped in foil and fresh oysters. Dessert? A cobbler-babinka hybrid, mouth waters at thought of it.

my Dad puts oysters on the grill
Here’s my Dad setting out the oysters.

my cousin mia
my cousin Mia

My younger cousins set up a table by the food to play Tagalog-style mahjong. The aunties were impressed that they knew how. I had been taught how to play the night before, but I still can’t seem to remember what words mean which.

Then the rain began to come down. Next thing you know I’m trying to hook together rods to help erect cover with cousins and uncles. Mahjong table gets tucked under tarp tied to trees. Everyone seemed to be laughing. The mahjong playing continued; the clicking of tiles joined with the patter of the rain. My uncle stood over my cousin Samantha with an umbrella as she played. A towel was out to pat down the tiles as water hit the table. My Tito Francis poured me a beer. My Dad and Ernelyn percolated coffee over the fire. The oysters were split open and passed around.

The atmosphere was festive. The food was aplenty. The air was cool and wet. After a while, went with Ernelyn, Jessie, and my Dad’s sisters and walked along the shore, even waded in the “warm” water. By then the rain had stopped. I can’t find the right words to capture the scene. Hopefully the pictures give you the idea.

my cousin Jessica

The trees looked eerie Snow Falling on Cedars book-cover’esque.

Yeah, I’m definitely a Northwest girl.

    • Anonymous
    • August 24th, 2004 2:01am

    Sounds like you had a good time. It’s nice to see that other people enjoy the weather around here as much as I do. I much prefer the mild temperatures and rain to the extreme hot and cold other locations have.

    • Anonymous
    • August 25th, 2004 11:33am

    I like your new site. Maaaan, it’s like ths same colors I was gonna redo my site with though! That’s an awesome idea putting the permalinks on your Xanga page. I was wondering how I could draw people from my Xanga page to my own site before. Maybe I’ll have to copy =)

    • Anonymous
    • August 25th, 2004 11:35am

    Oops, that last comment was from Don.

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