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As I watched the beleaguered SeaTac airport try to open and then close again, all day long, first watching my 11:55 AM flight get cancelled, and then watching my 8:45 PM flight do the same, I realized that the short Smith family reunion was getting shorter and shorter. I would like to say that I handled this with aplomb, water-off-a-duck’s-backing it the whole day long, laughing uproariously at well-timed jokes.

Instead I hunkered. I went away. I was pesada. Really pesada (roughly, negative, a pain in the ass). I called the airlines and they were all, “I’d be happy to get you out on a flight on Saturday night” and I thought, Saturday night, no no no. I have a niece and nephew. 11 and 4. Do you know how few hours there are in a school day to hang out with a four-year-old? Arriving at night is a day wasted. Missing Saturday is unthinkable. The kid is busy growing and developing language and changing before our very eyes. Not Saturday night.

And I tried and tried and tried again and finally, with an inkling of pesadez and not just a bit of my voice breaking against the tearstorm that wanted to come (did you not know that I cry easily? It may or may not be relevant to our relationship), I got a willing ear. And after about 48 minutes of talking and hold and hold again, this genius of a woman, this sympathetic soul, to whom I told the story about how it’s a short trip, and my family my family my family managed to pull some strings at Alaska Airlines and get me what was quite possibly the very last seat out on a plane which costs me only about a day of the time with my family, and not more.

And the tension flowed out of my jaw and neck and shoulders, and I realized that I hadn’t eaten or drunk anything in hours (this, a grand change from what I heretofore proclaim to be the best eating during a snowstorm forever and ever amen with grilled wild caught salmon and a rainbow chard fritatta and parmesean rosemary scones and brownies and noodles and baby bok choy cooked with sesame oil (but not all together)). And then we (me, Pam and Mr. NEV) bundled ourselves to the teeth (and beyond, girl’s got to wear a hat) and we all went out for pizza. And to stand and hop and twitter (but not tweet) about everything all iced up, iced over, covered in ice, ice ice baby.

It was gorgeous. I kept on seeing sea anenome, urchins, other undersea creatures. I wondered if it was the wateryness of it, the otherworldliness of it, or just how silent the streets were, our puffs of breath converted into ascending bubbles. Anyway, here it is. Graininess due to lighting things up in iPhoto, but I tried to remain true to what I saw re: color and exposure.

Look at the pretty:

And I know it’s not fair to play favorites, but these giant tufted birdheads, well, they win.