Friday, August 20, 2010

Computer Back ONLINE! Kite Festival Day 2

Did I ever mention that my husband is SO smart? After the kitty rampage which led to the apparent demise of my ancient (5-year-old) laptop, I called my own personal computer guru. Though the computer black-out seemed to indicate certain death, he calmly told me to unplug the computer, remove the battery and wait patiently for a day or two before adding ANY power to it...the buy a new one.

I really appreciated his encouragement to shell out the cash for a new computer. Mine takes about 45 minutes to turn on and sort itself out before I can actually use it. So perhaps we could justify it just based on that, but shelling out for a newfangled computer isn't really something we should be doing at this time, either. So I waited.

And, VOILA! It's back to its old (slow) self. Better slow than no computer.

Thanks, Mr. B!'s not as if we sat inside and cried over the computer. In fact, we headed up the road a few blocks back for more fun at Washington State International Kite Festival. Wednesday was Kids & Seniors Day and Patriotic Kite Day. The grandparents, the girls and I took three kites with us to fly in the open fly area, and returned home three hours later with seven kites.

V & E made kites in the kite building tent where volunteers helped kids of all ages make simple diamond-shaped kites using pre-cut plastic kite forms, two light dowels and some masking tape. The price: free. (Thank you to Washington Kitefliers Association members who provided the manpower, and likely the makin's.) And they flew beautiful. E, who opened the morning by saying she didn't fly kites "because it's not fun," proceeded to fly her new kite, unprovoked, for a good, solid half hour before finally sitting back to watch some of the kite events.

V earned another kite by signing up for Foster Grandparent Day. The first 100 children to sign up (well, really to show up) were given free kites (thank you, Elmer's Flag & Banner, for the donations). V came away with a really cool, green, alien-shaped kite which dipped and dove just right for her. If we add a tail, her foster grandparent/coach told us, it will fly really smoothly.

And finally, during the Eastern-style kite fighting contest, the girls and I enjoyed running after the "losing" kites. In Eastern countries where kids can't afford the paper or glue or sticks or string to make kites, they earn all their kites by racing for those cut free in the adults' kite fights (ala The Kite Runner). To demonstrate both the fighting style and the tradition, the kite fighters donated at least a dozen kites to the effort Wednesday. The main kite had the glass-coated line that would traditionally be used in the competition, but for the sake of safety, the remainder had clean lines. The kids (and, ok, some of us grownups) had a hayday running for the kites. But V and I learned that once the stiff winds carried the kites back into the dunes, most of the runners quit. She and I carried on to find our forth (and final) free kite of the day. A little tape repair and about 15 minutes of string untangling and she's got her own fighting kite. Now we just have to learn how to fly it...

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