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Friday was occupied stem to stern with testing patches so we could do a late build with confidence. Feels like it took way too long, but that's what it took. Was standing over my keyboard squeezing in last notes (i'd figured out a way to reproduce a related non-showstopper bug) at 6:45, as an office friend who was giving me a lift waited patiently. Thanks to him, I arrived at synagogue in reasonable time.

Other team members volunteered to do the after hours testing, when the build would be done (around 8pm). My boss was very protective of my weekend time---that it didn't have to be me re-testing---which was nice. Also nice confidence in the comprehensibility / comprehensiveness of my notes.

Lecha Dodi as I arrived at shul, which was honestly earlier in the services than I'd anticipated. 7:10 or so (start time 7). I'd briefly volunteered to lay lead these services. Good thing I came to my senses on Wednesday and handed that off.

Enjoyed services. Bonnie and David were leading, so it was from the purple book (Siddur Chaverim Kol Israel). I like that book, although it has a few unfortunate page-break placements. They'd brought extras, so we had enough copies for everyone (~20). A few people stuck with our standard siddur, and B&D called pages in both books smoothly.

The lay leaders added a few extra readings, including Judy Chicago "Merger poem" after Aleinu. This was slightly more confusing than it should have been, because, it turned out, some editions of the book had replaced this with a different poem "A Simple Pebble". Mine had the pebble poem, but I found I was able to recite along with the Chicago Aleinu poem, thanks to years of use in my childhood chavurah. Pleased, I thought I'd see if I remembered also the tune, to which we sometimes sang it.

I did remember it, but to my surprise no one else seemed to have heard of a tune (including David&Bonnie) so this became an impromptu solo!

Slightly amazing myself, I hit all the notes on key, even the ones that I often flub where it jumps or drop. I was very glad not to mess that up, because when sung right I really enjoy listening to that one. With the acoustics in the new room, it sounded lovely. Got lots of nice feedback afterward. Still, I'd hoped for unison singing, not a solo.

After services and the oneg snacking, Shabbat Dinner out at Stone Hearth Pizza in Belmont center. Thought about Sweet Tomatoes in West Newton, that earlier this week suffered a terrible car accident. My heart goes out to them.

Saturday morning, all the house chores and Jonathon got a haircut. Also, S arrived to pick up his light bulb that had been delivered to our house, and we spoke about synagogue / school matters. Good to hear from an observer from a different angle.

Parents arrived Saturday around 4:30. We shared stories of our recent vacations: Jonathon&me to Caribbean, them to Peru&Ecuador/Galapagos. Cooked farm share potatoes and greens, augmented with takeout tofu & seitan.

After dinner, cake and presents, for a belated family birthday celebration. I'm still not fully let go of my disappointment to be observing it in March, but it was quite nice. Felt like someone else's birthday, which I was happy to spend with family, of course, but...

We went off to bed not long after dinner. Ima was tired. The trip had gotten them used to early-starting days.

Next morning, parents and I all took a long walk. From home down bike path to Alewife Reservation. Along the water, then loop back via Belmont streets to the bottom of Lake St at Rt 2.

Next door neighbors stopped over, to pick up some visual aids for 3rd grader's research project on Michigan. We grown ups reminisced about our own Everyone Researches A Different State projects, back in the day. (Montana, thank you very much.)

After that, lunch at Arlington diner. Then Miriam's retirement party. Then Ari's birthday games dinner. Then perhaps slightly over long house tour to Erica & Ben.

Full weekend!

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