Mike and a few of the the kids joined me last night for the annual picnic of my Toastmasters club. It was a fine time. Helen and Gerard swam in our host’s swimming pool. Rose won a ceramic vase at the club’s Chinese auction. Mike took in the verdant surroundings. Dominic played the guitar and sang a few Irish songs. It was the first time that Dominic was the object of cries of “Encore! Encore!” He was pleased as punch. And speaking of punch, I brought a batch of Hootenholler Rum Punch for the crowd to enjoy. Yes, I’m the one who dubbed it “Hootenholler,” and Dominic, who felt embarrassed by the ridiculous name, begged me to please call the punch something else, or how could he bring himself to sing for these people who knew that his mother used goofy words like “hootenholler”? I didn’t, and he did anyway. Besides the Hootenholler Rum Punch, I brought along a Seven Layer Taco Dip that positively rocked the house, and which was as cheap and easy a recipe as one can find at such a level of deliciousness. After the business of eating came the business meeting, for which I’d been asked to serve as Storymaster. My job was to tell a funny two-minute vacation story. Everyone expected that I’d share a story starring the kids, but instead, I told about an incident that took place on Mike’s and my honeymoon, in which we drove our rental car onto the premises of a military compound in Rome and got surrounded by Italian guys holding machine guns. It wasn’t funny at the time, but it is now. Funny how funny gets funnier with time and distance.