"It's still cheating," Rory says, because some things have to be said every year. It's like apples and honey, one of the Williamses complaining about the walls already existing.
"It's perfectly all right," Amy and her mum say in unison, and Amy's dad hands Rory two hammers to hold while he goes back into the shed for more schach.
"I still think it's cheating," Rory says, but then the spaceship crashes through the schach pile, splinters flying everywhere, and so he stops trying to make the Ponds Assembled define their idea of the concept of temporary to him just one more time.
It might have been better if River were late.
"Mum, Dad," Amy says. "This is River."
It might have been better, too, if they'd decided to mention that Amy's pregnancy had turned itself into a woman old enough to date Aunt Rachel.
(Aunt Rachel gives River her phone number and River asks for her e-mail address instead. But it's still not as bad as the time Rory's dad stood up and asked Aunt Sharon to step outside. Few things are.)
Melody comes by after River leaves and sits by the outdoor table that's currently supporting the wine and Amy and Rory's cups.
"I thought she would never leave," Melody says. "Finally." Amy's mum comes out of the house then, carrying a box, and drops it when Melody bounds over and flings her hand out to shake.
"Hi, I'm your granddaughter!"
Amy's mum looks at Amy. At Rory. At Amy again.
"Hi," she says faintly.
"We can explain," Rory says.
Amy puts her hand on his arm. "Actually, we can't."
"Can't-not-able-to," Rory specifies. "Not that we don't want to. But we don't really understand it, either."
"I'm like a cat with nine lives," Melody says. "Only more. It's complicated."
"We're going to need more wine," Amy decides and heads inside.
"So you're looking to merge?" Martha asks Rory's cousin Gail, who lives two blocks away from Martha but has never met her before.
When the Doctor said he was going to be sending people by to make sure they didn't get themselves hurt, Amy's just grateful he meant I'm sending over a nice Jewish doctor and not did I mention this species of alien? No? My mistake.
"We've got a kohain," Gail says enticingly.
"We've got a leftie who's a bodybuilder," Martha offers. "Plus someone's basement."
"It's a deal," Gail says. "I'll talk to my breakaway, you talk to yours?"
Aunt Sharon just shakes her head. "You're only going to become the new establishment, children. You have to do more than take a different approach. That won't shift the paradigm."
"Meh." Gail pops a noodle into her mouth. "We just want hashkama and no speeches."
The aliens show up in time for dessert.
Martha solemnly band-aids their tentacles.
Ianto Jones is somehow connected to Rory's cousin's boyfriend's ex-boyfriend, somehow, and he shows up in a neatly pressed suit and hands Amy's parents a lovely basket of candy and flowers.
"Your family wins the weirdness award," Amy says. "Third year counting. That's a record."
"That's only because Aunt Sharon's wife's sister is boycotting and you know it," Rory sulks.
The less said about Jack Harkness the better.
"You're taking the completely wrong approach," Donna dismisses. "You've got to shift the paradigm or you're just running in place."
"Marry me," declares Aunt Sharon and is promptly tapped on the shoulder by her wife. "Oh, all right," Aunt Sharon says. "Marry someone else, then."
Inevitably, the Doctor shows up too late.
The assembled, vaguely related, masses are taking the schach down and leaving the walls as they are, for the sole purpose of giving them something to argue about until Pesach.
("Chapter and verse!" Amy's father'd roared at Rory's mother after tea the fourth night, and money'd changed hands. Rory sulked more; he'd bet on it being Amy's mother against Rory's brother's wife before they'd even made it outside.)
The Doctor steps outside the TARDIS, looks around, steps back inside carefully, and shuts the door. It lands five feet away ten minutes later.
He pokes his head out again and grins a wide grin that's supposed to make you forget that yet another spaceship ruined the schach. And doesn't.
"Am I too late for cake?" he asks brightly.
(Of course he isn't.)