We whisked him off to our house and ensconced him in the Marcia Brady Guestroom™ which suited him to a tee. Awaiting Derek were FexEx'ed birthday greetings from his sweetie (uncle_james). We then drove up to Twin Peaks to admire the view and start the photo marathon that the weekend was to become.
Next, off to West Portal for dinner at the nice Italian restaurant. Then, the bonfire on Ocean Beach. (heypyro) was in full pyromania, dousing huge slices of tree with lighter fluid and igniting them.
Steve brought snax which were distributed. His journal gives a full list of the LJ attendees here. The evening and sky were beautiful; the conjunction of the crescent Moon and Venus hovered over our merrymaking. At 10:30PM or so the police threatened to start ticketing cars in the parking lot, so we hastily retreated to the Lone Star for Derek's first visit. Like a puppy that's been scampering all day, he suddenly became very, very sleepy, so we brought him home and tucked him into the big psychedelic Marcia Brady bed.
Saturday dawned clear and hot, so we headed out early. First up to the Marin Headlands for pictures and views.
Back over the Golden Gate bridge to Fort Point, actually directly under the bridge. Then to the Palace of Fine Arts. The swans were kind of hiding, but we found them, and also a strange group of bohemians dressed in various shades of pink, posing for photos. We asked if they would mind if we photographed them, oohing and ahhing over Derek's Orange Swingline® which is sort of a Lawn Gnome kind of thing (ref. Amelie).
That stapler will be the envy of all the others, relegated to their lonely, untraveled lives in office desk drawers.
Noon was fast approaching, so we decided to head to the Castro for lunch. On the way we stopped at Alamo Square for the requisite Painted Ladies shot. Then off to the Gayest Corner in the World-Castro & 18th, for lunch at La Tortilla.
Arriving back home, Derek checked email, Steve caught some sun, and I started to prep for the afternoon's cookout. We intentionally kept the party small, to include people who mostly know Derek from LJ, and to avoid conflicting with another event previously scheduled for the same time. Our schedule was also quite full, so we needed to minimize prep and cleanup. As it was, people brought all sorts of goodies and yummies, from rice casserole to spectacular guacamole to nummy brownies to delicious cole slaw and on and on. (dr_scott) even made a wonderful low-carb spice cake that we have to get the recipe for, cause we've eaten it all up (I ate 3 pieces for a "snack" yesterday).
Present (besides the three of us) were foodpoisoningsf, keanubear and Greg and their friend Eric, barak, excessor, dr_scott, iberianbear, mindplay, sftekbear and Brian, heypyro, arkanjil, and Gregg.
Everyone stayed for hours, and afterward (keanubear) and Greg stuck around to watch The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T, a bizarre film written and designed by Dr. Seuss.
Sunday we were up early again to take Muni to Chinatown. We were on a mission--meet up with Dave (backawayslowly), find a dragon, and have lunch. Mission accomplished, and lunch was great Vietnamese at a place Dave recommended, as he lives in the neighborhood. Then off via the 30 Stockton bus to Fisherman's Wharf.
What can I say? Ghiardelli Square, the Cannery, the big red crab sign, Pier 39 and the sea lions, the Musee Mechanique--we did it all. My dogs were barking louder than the sea lions.
We parted with Dave and grabbed the F line to the Castro, then a cab up home. S & D sunned themselves whilst I caught up on email. Then off to the Haight and Amoeba Records. Then the Milk Bar across the street to hear (keanubear)'s band The Bobbleheads, then the Lone Star for the beer bust. It was very crowded-we had to wait in line a bit, a first for us. It was so packed on the patio I almost didn't escape, but we did and hiked a block to The Stud for the Planet Big underwear dance. Saw (sftekbear), danced up a storm, then home to watch Angel on TiVo and eat leftovers. To bed rather early, as Derek's flight was early in the morning.
This morning we got up at 5:00AM *gasp* and brought our little Derek to the airport. Tearful goodbyes were said, and pledges to return soon and often. I can't recall a more fun-filled, event-packed weekend in recent memory, with so many nice guys, especially sweet, funny, handsome, entertaining, cheerful, neat, cute, smart, and in all ways wonderful Derek. What a guy!! We hope he and James will be here together sometime too so we can see more sights (and have a full table for canasta).
And I also can't remember the last time we didn't drag our houseguest to Costco.