Monday, September 15, 2008

A weekend of fun!

I know you've been waiting with bated breath, dear reader, ever since I shared with you that I would be out of town for a while. Well, I'm back!

Here's what happened while I was away:

Thursday, 3:00 a.m. -- Woke up. Cursed alarm clock and Myrna, in that order, for going off and for scheduling a 6:25 a.m. flight, respectively.

Thursday, 4:30 a.m. -- Picked up Myrna at her house, traveled to airport for aforementioned 6:25 flight.

Thursday, 6:25 a.m. to 10:55 a.m. -- Flight to Buffalo, NY, via Atlanta, GA

Thursday, noonish -- Stopped at the Sheridan Family Restaurant. From the name, you would not guess that the Sheridan Family was Greek, but they were. I had the turkey reuben, Myrna had the spinach and feta omelet. (And people think bloggers write about unimportant things.)

Thursday, 1:00ish p.m. -- Crossed the border into Canada at Niagara Falls. Female Canadian border agent tried to look stern and commanding, failed pretty epically. Checked in at hotel and, after being harangued by a TourNiagara woman for only planning one night in the greater Niagara Falls metropolitan area, made our way to beautiful Niagara on the Lake, Ontario.

Thursday, 1:30ish p.m. -- Made it to Inniskillin Winery just in time for the guided tour to start. Found out all about winemaking and grapes and whatnot. Tasting at the end included three wines -- the first two were Someyear Chardonnay Something Something and Someyear Merlot Something Something. The final one -- the liquid gold -- was the first wine I've ever liked. Viva la icewine! Inniskillin's 2006 Olympic Vidal Icewine -- yum! Now, we know...and knowing is half the battle.

Thursday, 3:00ish p.m. -- Well and truly wined up, yet not having bought anything, we continued into Niagara on the Lake, where we went to visit The Lake. (Lake Ontario, that is.) It was superwindy, but we enjoyed the view. Myrna took some pics, and if she sends good ones, I'll post them. After sitting on the lake and freezing our collective buns off, we walked into downtown Niagara on the Lake, which is like a mainstreet shopping area and touristy thing. So Myrna and I wandered, got some ice cream, did some shopping, etc.

Thursday, 4:30ish p.m. -- Back at the hotel, it was time for siesta, or whatever the French-Canadian equivalent is.

Thursday, 8:00ish p.m. -- Once I (finally) woke up from siesta, we went to Copacabana, a brazilian steakhouse in Niagara Falls. It was good -- literally endless meat (until you tell them to stop) served on swords by large men, whilst showgirls did their thing for a private party on the patio. Definitely worth the stop.

Thursday, 10:00ish p.m. -- We walked closer to the Falls and then into Casino Niagara, where I promptly dropped 50 bucks (Canadian), whereas Myrna, betting as little as one penny (CANADIAN) at a time, stretched her 20 bucks out for quite some time.

Thursday, 11:30ish p.m. -- We saw the light show on the Falls and then made our way back to the Marriott.

Friday, pre-noon -- Stayed in bed and watched Maury ("You are NOT the father!" and "The lie detector PROVED that you had sex with 9 women while your fiancee was in the hospital!") and other high-quality television.

Friday, noon -- We headed off to the wedding, but first had to go on the endless search for lunch. Holy crap, it's hard to find a place to eat between Niagara Falls and Buffalo! Ultimately, we got into downtown Buffalo and drove around until we found a TGIFriday's and then while we were trying to find a parking space, we found a hole-in-the-wall pizza joint called Prima Pasta Pizza or somesuch. It was good. I believe it was at lunch that we started talking about Myrna's aversion to horror films (whereas I grew up on a steady diet of Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Halloween, etc.) -- this will come into play at...

Friday, 2:30ish p.m. -- ...when we can pretty much pinpoint where the trip went to hell. (Haha, just kidding. It wasn't that bad.) But we checked into the Colonial Motel (whose tagline, "Come...find rest," suddenly seemed more like a threat than a promise), a couple miles from the state park where our friends Jen and Isaiah would be getting married. If we hadn't been discussing such things as Psycho and Stephen King, the Colonial would probably have been a lot more appealing. However, comma, things being what they were, we were in for a bumpy ride. When we got into the room, we realized it was clean and smoke-free -- bonus! But then we heard a conversation going on and thought we were in someone else's room...until we realized it was a conversation happening at normal conversation level IN THE ROOM NEXT DOOR, but we could hear it as though they were standing right beside us. And also, they had a three-year-old who liked to scream. A lot. Also, as we explored the room, we discovered it was actually adjoined to two other rooms. One of the adjoining doors was locked from the other side, with no lock on our side...they could just flip the lock and come right in. The other adjoining door was "locked" on our side -- with a hook-and-loop mechanism used for securing a 1950's-era bar-bathroom stall. Later that night, we would debate whether it was better to use the chain lock on the entry door to our room, lest we have to fumble with it when the man with the chainsaw burst through from one of the adjoining rooms. (Having chosen the bed by the door, I chose to secure the chain lock, lest the man with the chainsaw come in from that way, um, unexpectedly.) Also, there was no phone in the room. Curiously: Coffee maker? Yes. Phone? No.

Friday, 4:00 p.m. -- The wedding! It. Was. Beautiful. Everything at Letchworth State Park was a little damp from the morning rain, but it quit raining just in time, and the cool breeze kept the humidity from becoming too bad. Jen and Isaiah and their wedding party all looked great, and even though Rev. Marty seemed to have some sort of blackout/stroke event for about 45 seconds during the ceremony, it was terrific. The readings the moms chose were beautiful, and the groom's dad even played guitar and sang a song.

Friday, 5:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. -- The party! We reveled in a tent for the outdoor reception, since the rain was threatening to return. Music was provided by Minnesota folk legend Charlie Parr.

Saturday, 9:00 a.m. -- Myrna and I had a heart-to-heart discussion about whether or not we should stay at the Colonial Motel any longer than absolutely necessary. Luckily, we were of one mind, which meant that once we left for the post-wedding brunch, we were never looking back. While I watched part of an episode of Million-Dollar Listing (it was good, but I really don't miss cable all that much -- come on, a college kid whose dad gave him a $1.5-million budget for a house?!), Myrna's mom helped us by accessing The Internet and booking us an alternative in Buffalo for Saturday night. Hooray, The Internet!

Saturday, 10:30 a.m. -- We went to brunch and enjoyed the world-famous Jen's Cheese Grits, which I would like the recipe for, as well as a variety of other brunchtastic foods.

Saturday, 1:30 p.m. -- We hit the road and shuffled off to Buffalo (again). We made it to our hotel around 2:30ish and then siestaed again.

Saturday, 7:00 p.m. -- Myrna had received a text message from her friends who just moved from Buffalo to Plainfield, recommending a place for dinner, so we went there. The Sterling Place Tavern is not somewhere we'd have thought to visit -- from the outside it looks like just another bar -- but the food was great, and the service was hilarious. The sign said "Please wait to be seated," but as we were standing there, this old (and I do mean OLD) man walked out of the kitchen and said, "What are you standin' there for?!" I pointed out the sign -- and also pointed out that we were following directions -- and he scolded us just to sit anywhere. Shortly after we chose our corner table, Judy the Waitress (and Bartender and Manager and etc.) came over and took our order (and also explained that Al, the OLD man, was 96 years old!). She was bubbly and fun and was even bubblier and funner when we told her that Hermen and Erin sent us. We had a terrific dinner and then headed back to the hotel.

Saturday, 11:30 p.m. -- Did you see Tina Fey as Sarah Palin? Awesome.

Sunday, 9:00 a.m. -- After a nice continental breakfast at the Quality Inn, we headed to the airport, returned the rental car and hopped on the plane.

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. -- When we landed in Atlanta for our layover, we had a good three hours to kill. We did lunch at Chili's and then spent some time in the bookstore. I was looking at some Encyclopedia Brown collections and was totally shocked when I asked Myrna if she knew that Encyclopedia's real first name was "Leroy," and she said, "Oh, yeah. I read a lot of Encyclopedia Brown when I was younger." So I bought one of the ten-story collections and we turned it into a game. One of us would read the chapter aloud and then the other one had to try to guess how Encyclopedia had cracked the case. I'm not sure we kept score, but I'm pretty sure Myrna won. I'm also pretty sure the people around us thought I was, how do you say, "slow" on account of the reading aloud from the fifth-grade-level book, but whatever.

Sunday, 4:00 p.m. -- Right when we were supposed to board, we learned that the Indy airport was on a ground stop. Whatever that is. So we weren't going to be able to board, but then we were going to be able to board, but then we were going to sit on the tarmac for a while, but then we weren't going to sit on the tarmac. All told, our flight was delayed taking off by about 40 minutes, but we still made it to Indianapolis 3 minutes early. Which makes me wonder -- if you can speed up to make up that time, why don't we always fly that fast? But whatever, we made it here safely and our bags made it here safely, and after a quick trip to the Economy lot at 6:15 p.m. and a quick trip to Plainfield, it was all good and Myrna was home safely.

Sunday, 6:45 p.m. -- I stopped by Mr. Gyros on 38th Street to pick up dinner and was home by 7:00 p.m.


All in all, it was a terrific, action-packed, scary, beautiful, awesome trip!

RHB

1 comment:

Meana said...

Well, now that you put it like that, I guess we did pack in quite a bit of activity into a few short days!

Did you not notice that when I was reading aloud from Encyclopedia Brown that I used my "quieter, only for the person next to you" voice? :)

Still regretting not purchasing some of the icewine, but aside from that (and the motel), a fabulous wedding and a fantastic weekend!