Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thanksgiving Week 2013

David Hartwell, my late husbands longtime best friend, came out this week to help me process Paul's papers and books in storage (see above, w box top on head). This was not an easy job. We did a little bit of this work back in September, this week we got down to the nitty gritty - looking through boxes, and boxes, of papers. 

Alexander brought his homework to storage, a little cold down there in the labyrinths and halls and lockers of other peoples stuff. 

In the evenings we visited some of the finest science fiction authors Southern California has to offer. I decided to take my guitar over to Cheryl and David Brins and in lieu of a house-gift I would sing them a song. It went so well that David Brin brought out his harmonica and chimed in on a Dylanesque ramble of chords.  

David Brin in the key of C

The next night we drove up to Elizabeth and Gregory Benfords house in Orange county, where I played a few songs and we got a tour of his Chesley Bonestell prints. Cool! I adore Bonestell's astronomical art. There was some other great astro art as well, like a super cool rendering of one of my favorite weird star systems; Beta Lyrae with its swirling gases (similar to Bonestell's).. 
Here you can see a Martian-like desert-scape above Greg's desk. He's an astro-physicist at UC Irvine and a much loved, hard sci-fi writer in the tradition of Arthur C Clarke. Clarke's stories, Expedition To Earth and etc, was one of the big reasons I started writing as a kid. So cool that Greg was a friend of his. 

A few years back Alexander and I were watching a documentary on Stephen Hawking and Greg was in it, I said, "Alexander, there's your dads friend talking about your favorite subject (physics)". 

We left the Benford's relatively early, I had a race to run with Alexander the next morning. The Thanksgiving Day 5K in Oceanside.  We were amongst 10,000 people at 8am, crazy. Alexander beat me by 20 seconds, but we both came in around 33 minutes. Not so bad considering I'm just coming back from a year of appendectomies and sprained ankles, and well, other stuff.

Thank you David Hartwell for a thoroughly enjoyable holiday week. Lots of hard work (not to mention emotional) on Paul's archive and really fun visits with inspiring writer friends. 

We got David to the airport and drove back home to find ourselves suddenly immersed in a spontaneous visit from Paul's oldest son and family, down from the Bay Area for the day. Their kids (Paul's grandkids) and Alexander, romped and rooted around in the sand for several hours while the sun set over our local beach. 

(all photos by David Hartwell, except for those by clb)

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