It was a wonderfully packed schedule of this vacation. Usually, I like a little more down time for resting, reading and just being lazy. But. These past five days have been amazing.
I can’t tell you how much I’ve missed my friends in Wisconsin. On Friday evening all 10 of us met for dinner. Of course Friday in Wisconsin is Fish Fry night. So of course I had a lovely Grilled Chicken with Broccoli and Penne dish that could have served at least four people.
After my favorite Peppermint Ice Cream (dessert comes with dinner), we ventured to Comedy Club at The Armory in Janesville, WI. It’s a good thing that LaVone made reservations for us. The place was packed. We got seated and ordered a bucket of beer. (It sounds worse than it is.. it was really four beers in a silver bucket filled with ice. And since we’re such a rowdy bunch, four of us each had one.) The comedians were hysterical, which is after all, the point of the evening. I laughed until my sides hurt. Unfortunately, I can’t remember a single joke that they told. The headliner Comedian even gave us one that we could tell our friends.. but .. nope, it didn’t stick. Apparently my brain cells get quite slippery after I laugh that much.
I woke up at 9:00AM. That seems as if it would mean I slept in a little bit. Since I’ve been on the night shift, my sleep cycle is more of a whirlwind situation than any kind of predictable cycle. I figure any sleep at all is nothing short of a miracle.
I met LaVone at the coffee pot. And our first “Golden Girls’ conversation began. It ended nearly three hours later, still in our bathrobes. Yup.. it was noon. I hurried to make myself presentable and picked up Betty Jo for a bit of shopping. My granddaughter has a birthday this week, and there is a particular doll that she’s wanting. My daughter sent me a text me with the details. Betty Jo and I tried, (we really did!) but apparently every other ten-year old girl in the area likes the same doll. I dropped Betty Jo back at home and made it back to LaVone’s in time to go to church with her. She has always attended a Saturday evening service and this was my chance to attend with her. I’m so glad I did. I was raised in the denomination she attends. It was nice to ‘remember when’ and to meet so many of her friends there. Afterward we planned to get some dinner. The place we decided on, Bazinga’s was hosting a private party, which we learned from the sign posted on the door when we arrived.
We reverted to Plan B, which we hadn’t thought of as yet. Then it hit me like a hail stone.. El Jardin! Love that place! And it’s just down the street.
We lost tack of time over the tostadas and salsa. Of course we were involved in deep conversation and laughter. But for some reason at just that moment, I checked my cell phone and noticed we’d better RUN if we are going to the 7:00 movie across town.
Well, if you knew Lavone, Betty Jo and I, you’d know there wouldn’t be much running, especially after eating dinner at El Jardin. So I drove… and they both navigated. After all of that we did manage to find seats at 6:59 pm. Whew!
We saw the movie, Black or White with Kevin Costner. We all recommend that you see it.
Woke up again about 9:00AM. I see a pattern here.. yes! We again did the coffee thing, and the bathrobes til noon thing. Then we decided that since we were going to a play at 2:00, we should make some attempt at getting ready. In no time at all, we flew into the parking lot, scurried across the ice-spattered pavement (without falling I might add) and in the front doors with five minutes to spare. That was just enough time to buy tickets, get a cookie, a bottle of water and a program.
The auditorium was packed. LaVone ran into a frien, and as she chatted, I walked through the aisles looking for two good seats. I found a couple in the fifth row, center. LaVone caught up to me and the ladies by the aisle all stepped out to let us pass. One very optimistic lady commented when she saw my bottle of water… “You’ve both been to the ladies room right? So that we don’t have to get up during the play?”
Being the ever-sarcastic stranger, I responded with, “Yes, we’ve been to the rest room, but with this fresh bottle of water, I’ll probably have to go three more times before the intermission.” With that, I smiled ever so sweetly.
Then I spotted a bunch of open seats on the aisle. I thanked these kind ladies and we ran across the auditorium to our ‘perfect’ seats. (We never had to use the bathroom at all. Not even at intermission.)
The play, Ghost, the Musical… was absolutely stunning. The cast was so talented and the vocals amazing. There were several well-choreographed dance numbers as well. Little did I know until intermission, but LaVone had never seen the movie Ghost. But she assured me that she’d be renting it soon.
Play complete. A short drive home to regroup before the next event. I chose to used this coveted re-group moment to do a load of laundry and pack for my trip home later this evening.
With the last of my things now packed snuggly in to my salt covered car, that I now refer to as “The Salt Mobile” (It was snowy on the trip to Wisconsin and the plows were out spraying my car specifically, with salt so as to prevent me from having a single chip of paint left on the car by the time I reached Wisconsin.)
LaVone and I headed to Culver’s to meet several of our friends for dinner and ice cream. Or Frozen Yogurt as the case may be. (For those of you interested, the flavor of the day was Carmel Turtle and really very yummy.) On Sunday evenings Culver’s has a chicken dinner special, which this time I did participate in.
It was after much food and conversation and of course many hugs, that I said my good-byes to this special group of friends.
You may have noticed that the days One and Five itineraries are not listed. Well, I spent some time on those travel days with my special someone. Yes… Eat, Pray, Love Guy. We are moving forward with some level of intention. And a million smiles. During our time, it was he and I. We sat together on the loveseat by the fireplace and talked and talked for literally hours. There seems to be so much to say and listen to and learn about one another. He shared some of his poetry with me and I shared a blog or two with him. We talked about our writing processes and gave each other so many ideas going forward. (Of course the hand holding and snuggling were pretty nice too.)
All in all it was a wonderful vacation. I wouldn’t have spent a moment of it in any other way.