June 5, 2006
My friend Jennie was getting married, and I went down to the Bay Area for her bridal shower.
I was the first guest there – Emily and Krista (who had organized it) were already there. I helped Emily carry some stuff into the park. Emily had set up some signs with arrows because we were a little ways into the park. As we left the parking lot and got onto the side walk, an anxious park ranger stopped us.
“Excuse me – are you having some kind of event?”
Emily said, “Yes.”
Even more anxiously: “Well – I don’t have a reservation for you. You need a reservation for the picnic area.”
Emily, calmly: “We aren’t in the picnic area – we’re inside the park.”
The park ranger brightened, but was obviously flustered. “Oh! Ohhhh! Oh! Well! That’s great! I mean, we have this beautiful park, and no one uses it! Yes! Oh! Well, that’s wonderful!”
We smiled politely and started heading towards the interior of the park. The park ranger ran after us and said, “Well — you know — if you do go over there — ” pointing in the opposite direction of where we were headed — “by the kids play area, you shouldn’t bring that coffee into the park.” (Emily was holding a Starbucks cup.) “Because the squirrels, you know, have been drinking the caffeine, and they are crazy. They are all hyper and bite the children. So don’t leave any food out there.”
We reassured her that we wouldn’t feed caffeine to the squirrels, and were then finally able to make our way into the park.
The other guests who arrived told us that the park ranger greeted them very enthusiastically and pointed them in our direction: “You look like you’re going to the baby shower!” (“Um… bridal shower?”) “Oh! Yes! Well, you know — a shower!!”
She also told one of the guests — “You know, I couldn’t tell if they had alcohol — it’s allowed, but just be discreet.”
I think maybe she had a little bit of caffeine herself.