Another weekend in the nation's capital.

Aside from a few bouts of tenderness in the new dental work on Saturday, the pain and infection in that one particular molar are gone. Praise be to the gods of dental medicine. I go in on Friday morning to get fitted for the mounting post and temporary crown. Whether or not I'll be able to afford them is a different matter entirely. Time will tell, as it always does.

On Saturday, Lyssa and I meet up my mother and Judy, who happened to be in DC taking a bus tour of the nation's capital. Even though they were staying at a hotel just a few miles from our apartment, their tour was planned out on a minute-to-minute basis, so there was little time to hang out and wander around the city. Lyssa and I met up with them at the Ronald Reagan building downtown and after wandering around the building a bit (amazingly, my usual batman factor cleared the metal detector without raising any eyebrow -- even the Leatherman), we wound up in the basement at the food court for lunch. Down there we spent the next few hours catching up on the past few months, talking about everything going on, and stuff like that. Being a family, in fact. It sounds so strange to say that after so many years, probably because I've said it so little, but it's true.

We even caught part of the Sakura Festival from slightly behind the scenes; Saturday was the last day, in fact. Every year, we make plans to go and see what's going on, but somehow we never quite seem to make it for one reason or another. It kept threatening to rain on Saturday, but thankfully it held off until Lyssa and I got home. It was all too soon that we had to head back because we found the rest of the tour group. Unfortunately, they didn't get to see our apartment.

I dropped Lyssa off at home and then headed out to the Mad Scientist Coffee Klatsch to get a cup or two of coffee and hang out with everyone. I wound up talking about Babylon-5 with Jason and Hasufin after we got off on some tangent or other about the relative power levels of First Ones and younger races in that particular series, and tied it all up with gaming. Jason's developing a B-5 campaign around Mongoose Games' RPG (you know the one - the one that doesn't suck). Hopefully things will slow down soon, and we'll be able to start up our gaming nights again.

To avoid pushing my luck (and already compromised immune system) too far, I spent the evening at home hacking around with ISC BIND v9.4 to see if I could get DNS zone views working (which means that depending upon which side of the firewall you're on, trying to resolve the same hostname will result in a different IP address), and I think that I've got the configuration worked out. By writing about it on a Monday, this pretty much assures that something's going to go ker-flooey before the week is up. Time will tell.

Sunday was kind of a slow day. Lyssa and I got off to a rather late start (mostly because I slept in) and wound up going to Anita's for lunch. I don't know what's happened since March, but every time we've been there the service has been horribly slow, and you can only eat so many chips before you start wondering when the real food's going to come. It's getting a little annoying, and I'm definitely going to stay away from there for a while to see if things even out there a little bit.

Sunday night brought with it an unexpected bit of excitement: While cleaning Lucy the hamster's cage, we put said hamster into her plastic runny-ball and turned her loose in the apartment so I could wash out the cage and plastic basin. About halfway through the process, when I walked into the kitchen to get a roll of paper towels, I was quite surprised to see one plastic hamster ball and one lid to a hamster ball, but a notable lack of the ball's pilot. Somehow, Lucy had managed to slip the lid and get loose again. I took a quick glance around the apartment, but didn't see a small, fuzzy black critter running around anywhere. I called Lyssa out of the office and went to find my flashlight so that I could look behind or underneath everything in the apartment that Lucy customarily explored while still safely enclosed in a six-inch hollow plastic sphere, such as under the couch, behind the home entertainment system, and behind everything in the kitchen. Thankfully, Lyssa found Lucy by the wall behind the dining room table, and after a bit of fumbling and trying to grab her without causing any injury, I was able to scoop her up and drop her back into the runny-ball so that I could finish fixing the cage back up. Note to self: Try to get Lucy used to being handled more, so she won't squirm out of our hands. Further note to self: Look into putting Lucy into the bathtub when we clean her cage, because she can neither climb nor jump out of it.