Today was the day when I finally thrust Ryter headfirst into meeting the fambly. Extended family, that is, though he spent more time than ever before with my dad and he very very briefly met the Brother.
Every Fourth of July, my uncle, who was born on the first, has a big birthday/Independence Day party. It's like ideal for him because he's really into American history and especially the Revolutionary War. The birthday fact might have lead to the liking history fact, but who knows. Anyway, my uncle is an avid beachcomber/yard sale aficionado/junk collector and his house reflects that, much to the chagrin of my aunt (father's sister). But they have this big party and everyone comes, and we go every year and see the same people we see at the New Year's brunch. This year, my aunt said I could invite my boyfriend, more as a "Let's see who [Basiorana] is dating!" than a "Maybe she'd like to invite him!"
But the thing is, it worked out really well, because Ryter can't stay at a social function, especially with people he needs to censor himself around, for very long, and to be perfectly honest, as much as I like to see people, I really prefer to stay like three hours, max. When I'm there I say hi to people and talk to relatives if they talk to me, but I can only answer "So, how's school?" fifteen times before my head explodes. So it meant that we brought Shrewd down, we could leave her there to return with the 'rents and head back ourselves. And Ryter did very well, especially since it was like 25 people and I know maybe ten names. He talked with my aunt about schools (my aunt's a high school guidance counselor) and to my uncle about historical fiction and the other stuff he's writing, and to my mom about the Shadowrun game we're playing (yes, I'm playing a role-playing game with dice and everything, don't laugh, it's pretty cool) and role-playing, Dungeons and Dragons-type games in general. Then it got later, we got ready to leave, and there was an incident with a cookie that resulted in an emergency run down to the nearest Brooks (luckily, that wasn't very far) for some Benadryl. Nuts.
But he was okay, he just kind of felt crappy and his face got a little puffy. The swelling was down by the time we got back here. He promises he'll recover. I just feel really, really bad, mostly about the fact that it took so long for me to get out of there and head down to the Brooks with him-- but I really needed to say good-bye, at least to my grandfather, aunt and uncle, and my folks, who would have wondered where the heck I was.
I had to abandon him here, though, to go pick up my brother, who just got back from a week-long tour with his drum corps. He's just back for one night. On the way back I learned that he was most looking forward to showering on his own, after a week of group showers, or at least tripling up with other guys.
He's also so much darker than he was when he left that I swear he must have secretly changed races on me. And they gave him a name: [The Brother] Of-The-Pit. Also, With-The-Rubix-Cube. That's how they identify him: [his name] Of-The-Pit, With-The-Rubix-Cube. Shrewd says "The Pit" is his tribe. I'm not so sure.
The Brother went to shower alone while Ryter and I hung out and then, once the rest of the family returned, set off half a metric assload of fireworks from a bucket of sand in the street. We didn't destroy anything and the lawn only started smoking once, but it was cool anyway. I love New Hampshire-- this was totally legal...
Plus we have leftovers to launch some other time, probably from a beach somewhere. That will be awesomeness.
We went out to the 99 with my parents and Shrewd afterwards, so my dad finally will stop saying how he doesn't know this strange boy I'm seeing.
My mom and Ryter talked a great deal of the time. My mom really likes Ryter; they have a ton in common with the sci-fi love and more importantly, he can articulate himself and isn't afraid of her just because she's my mom like the Brother's girlfriend seems to be most of the time. She thinks he's awesome.
My dad's final verdict? "He's moving so fast that he's got about five minutes left to live, and he'll get more done in those five minutes than most people ever get around to. He's very high-energy. But he seems like a nice enough guy, and he wins serious points for winning over your mom so completely." I think this was very, very comforting to Ryter-- Daddy tends to be intimidating, even if you don't know him.
But it went well, it all went well. He made an excellent impression. It was a pretty good day.