One thing done this time was taking a dinner at a local restaurant the mere name of which causes my uncle to grimace. That's not because it's a bad restaurant; it's just that my mother is extremely fond of it, and my aunt is nearly so, and as a result every trip my parents take up to visit them results also in a trip to this restaurant, and my uncle's tired of it. I was saved last month because first I didn't much care where I ate, and second it was closed for the winter anyway.
The decor I was told was designed to be eclectic, with all of the various tables having their own unique-to-the-table candle holders (as it happens, the two tables at which I was looking had the same kind of candle holder), or different salt and pepper shakers (this I didn't see duplicated), or whatnot. For an example of a what, the bread baskets are made of wire meshes decorated with beads, so that indeed, no two are quite alike and it feels like it's going to fall apart when you pass the bread on. My mother and my aunt were greatly disappointed to see that all the bread dishes we received were of the same pattern and matched perfectly; Dad quipped that the place was going downhill.
The place was recently renovated and expanded, so that our party could sit in the large round table in the new window, something which caused a bit of concern on the part of the owner's. See, my cousin was due up from college for Easter, and it wasn't certain whether he'd be along for dinner or not, and the owner did not like the uncertainty of knowing whether there were four or five in the party. The owner seemed to be a nice enough guy who gave off the vibes of being a low-key character played by SCTV's Dave Thomas.
My mother selected a Fess Parker wine, which I thought I heard wrong, but no, that's what she ordered. When she initially tasted it she thought it was vinegary and when the waiter came around again asked that it be returned (the waiter initially thought she had judged it fine). At this second time the waiter thought the sample he tried was strong, but all right, but the customer is always right and so ... my mother gave it another try and with it having breathed some agreed it was strong, but all right. Thus my uncle was dispatched to find the waiter and report the wine was all right. By that time some of the people in the kitchen had sampled it, and they agreed it was vinegary, so they brought out a new bottle. Meanwhile I was trying to figure out a coonskin cap joke that made sense and was tasteful, which properties could not be combined in the time allotted, sadly.
Trivia: The Swiss patent office granted eight patents on electric clocks in 1901. Source: Einstein's Clocks, Poincaré's Maps, Peter Galison.
Currently Reading: Empire: How Spain Became A World Power, 1492 - 1763, Henry Kamen.