Previously, we met George's family, Callie dumped George, Bailey was pissed about the name erasing, George suspected Burke wasn't okay, Cristina tried to hold it together, Mer realized that her mom had an affair with the chief but is happy that he makes her happy, McDreamy wants to start over and Adele has run out of patience, and George's dad is in the hospital. So... pretty much every storyline they've ever written.
Meredith says that "many people don't know that the human eye has a blind spot in its field of vision. There's a part of the world that we are literally blind to... " but I lose track of all that she's saying when we see her and Derek in a bubble bath together. Mer seriously, seriously, seriously tries to keep Derek on track of taking things slow. It's a good first step with the bath, guys -- that's what I do when trying to avoid hitting a home run in a single evening. They're taking things slow and starting fresh, which Mer has deemed means no sex, since they started with sex the last time and we all know how that ended. He's smooching her the whole time as she says that the waiting is also fun, and "from now on I want to be bright and shiny." And from now on, I want to be in that bathtub.
The problem is, Mer says, sometimes our blind spots shield us from things that really shouldn't be ignored. Her mom is at the nursing home, looking even more severe than usual with a shorter haircut. Mer shows up to visit and cheerfully tries to get her to eat, but Ellis says there isn't any time with all of her surgeries. When Mer tries to apologize for not visiting, Ellis announces that she can't coddle her while she's trying to save lives. It's a fun little insight into Meredith's formative years. Ellis has no time, that is, until Richard shows up with food for her. She lights up and runs to him. He's embarrassed, seeing Meredith, but she assures him it's okay, and leaves. "Sometimes our blind spots keep our lives bright and shiny."
She walks into the locker room, announcing that dark and twisty Meredith is gone. "You're probably not going to want to be friends with me anymore because the sheer intensity of my happiness is going to make your teeth hurt. That's okay because life is good. Life. Is good." She turns around and notices that she's not getting quite the reception she expected, and at the glum faces, she asks if all is okay; they tell her about George's dad. She's genuinely concerned and asks if he's okay, and too quickly, George assures her he'll be fine. His clavicle was fractured when he fainted and fell, so Callie (of course) is going to be treating him. They're all discussing his chart when Bailey comes in looking for it. George hands it over and mutters about being fine, getting himself sent to scut for the day. Ever the smart woman, Bailey knows he won't be able to concentrate on anything. George tries to fight her, but she wisely sticks to her guns and reminds him that family members don't treat family. Cristina leaves, saying she's on Burke's surgery -- I guess Bailey's declaration that she not be allowed on any surgery doesn't count when her boss calls his girlfriend back into the OR. Meredith is going to the pit, and Alex is going to shadow Sloane while Izzie shadows Alex. Bailey goes once again through the rules that boil down to Izzie acting as a glorified room decoration. Izzie rolls her eyes -- a good move, I think, for someone getting a fairly undeserved second chance.
Happy from bath-time, Derek comes into the room whistling and cheerfully greets a confused Addison. He maintains that they can be civilized, and she's pleased at the change in his demeanor, even though I'm sure she realizes it's from some variety of naked canoodling with Meredith. They shake on being mature, coexisting adults and co-workers and he realizes she's still wearing her rings, which puts an ever-so-slight strain on the conversation. She unconvincingly says they might be stuck, and he cheerfully suggests using soap. (Did that this weekend when I realized oh so calmly that my Roman coin ring did not fit as it once used to -- thanks for the advice, McDreamy! -- and it worked like a charm. Grey's Anatomy: saving recappers' fingers.) She declares him strange, and he corrects her that he's merely bright and shiny.