Here’s something you probably won’t see much in the blog: It’s been a while since we had any rain. So, it was kind of interesting to have a day of more or less on and off showers. I left at about noon for another Gamelan rehearsal at Simon Fraser University. Today I think I did a little better, but I have a long way to go. I do have confidence that I’ll be better by the time they play their next concert (probably in November).
With the imminent delivery of our belongings this coming week, we’ve been cleaning out, straightening up, and preparing in general. However, we did take a brief break yesterday, and spent the day at the PNE, which stands for the Pacific Northwest Exhibition, which is just a fancy word for a big county fair. We’d been to a much smaller version of this in Rutland, Vermont years ago, so we knew somewhat what to expect. There was a lot of food â€”although I’d never seen a county fair in the US with a busy Vietnamese food booth and crÃ©pes â€” people doing product demonstrations (mops, shammies, cleaners, pots and other household items), a set of dog races sponsored by Eukanuba (called the Superdogs) with a very smarmy Bob Barker-type emcee called Herb Williams (thank goodness, this was his last year doing it, although his good-byes sounded so maudlin that they were nearly nauseating). We toured this year’s PNE model house, sponsored by Home Depot and a bunch of other companies. It was a Colonial monstrosity that would definitely be termed a ‘McMansion’. I have to admit that I did like the media room and the kitchen, but the furniture, architecture and decor were not at all what I would ever want to live in and it’s a shame that so much money and labor were poured into so much gaudy and fake looking decor.
I’d have to say that my favorite thing to see was the very authentic (at least as far as I could tell) cattle herding competition, where teams on horseback had 90 seconds to get 3 cows from a large herd (different numbers were called out for every round) into a pen at the far end of an arena. I only wish I could have gotten video of it, but the video camera is on the van, and besides, it was probably too dim to catch it. We didn’t go any of the rides at Playland, the amusement park on the fair grounds. Something to do at next year’s, perhaps, with my niece.