Monday, May 24, 2010

Vacation Time

We made a trip to New York City this past weekend. It was a great trip. We women had one room, and the guys had a "man cave". Pleasant drive to the big apple. No problems. We rented a van and packed it up and on our way.
Sunny day, not much traffic, even going into the city. We have a thing here called ez pass. What a great invention. Whip right through those toll gates. We got it mainly for the Holland Tunnel, and it really got us through all the toll lines in great time. We arrived in the city through the tunnel. Mippy drove the final leg. We came out of the tunnel and the garmin said to go one way, but Mippy thought we might be going the right way. By the way, the garmin often gets confused around tall buildings. After a screaming, yelling, swearing fit minor meltdown, we were headed for the hotel. Had to go around thousands of blocks in the darn traffic the block several times because of the one way streets, but we made it to the parking garage which charges thousands of dollars because they can and began to unload the van.
We went into our separate rooms and unpacked before heading out to ToysRUs to ride the ferris wheel, which, of course is a tradition. Thank goodness, I didn't have to ride it.
The kids swam, we shopped, we ate, we went to Central Park to ride the buggy and to hang out. We saw Wicked and I saw Race. Wonderful productions. I went to see Race first with James Spader from Boston Legal. What a provocative wonderful production! And after the play, the four person cast came out to greet those who waited by the stage door. It wasn't as though I waited (OK, I did), but there was about twenty people there to greet them and the cast was very kind to meet with us and thank us for coming.
We headed to Central Park Saturday morning. I mentioned that surely, if I was to find red cowboy boots anywhere, it would be here. No longer did I say it then they appeared in a window of a shoe store that we were going past. I went in, tried them on and they fit! Needless to say, I bought them AND wore them to the theater that night. Aren't they great????
Did you ever have a time when you began to laugh and giggle about something very silly and then it got to the point where you couldn't stop? Then everything becomes hysterical. We left the theater after seeing Wicked. A wonderful production, by the way. Did I mention that? Bean does this wonderful impression of a horse. She paws the ground then gallops. It is hysterical. You would have to see it to appreciate it. If I can figure out how to do a movie and download it, I will. That started the giggling in the corridor of the hotel. We got into our room and began to find everything amusing. We were laughing so hard that we couldn't stop. At least we were in the hotel room and not in someplace where we were supposed to be serious.
All in all, it was a wonderful trip.
I have my boots, we all have memories and we all arrived home safe and sound.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

I Love Spring

Monkeyboy is playing baseball again. How I love to watch! It is kids, having fun, I hope and parents sitting freezing our butts off, grumbling, even swearing watching with joy as the children learn the finer points of team work. Huddled in blankets, hoods on our heads, hands in our pockets, cheering them on "just strike out, we don't care, just end the game. I believe it was 20 degrees with a wind chill factor of -50. And the game lasted almost three hours since there were so many walks. OK, I exaggerate. Not to blame the pitchers, the weather took its toll on their arms and fingers...they had to be numb with the cold. The next game was much warmer. The parents are fun, we all cheer for both teams, perhaps a little harder for our team, but when a good play is made by either team, a cheer emits from the crowd on both sides.
Bean is playing lacrosse. I'm sure I am spelling it wrong, but spellcheck doesn't pick it up, so this is how I am going to spell it. Bean is co-captain of the team. Actually, I think the there are three captains. There are four players on the team...KIDDING! First boy, girl party for Bean last night. There was quite a discussion about it at the ballgame. Should Bean's mom call to see who was chaperoning the party, should she get a list of names, should they follow Bean to the party and hide in the bushes peering through the windows. First dances, first dates...that anxiety, giddiness, fear. My first date was with a boy named Bobby. We went to the movies (in the day you could actually walk to the movies). His friend met us there and Bobby and friend talked about how the movie wasn't true to the time period. The movie was at the turn of the century and Bobby pointed out that they didn't have zippers in clothing then. Bobby and I left and walked to my house where we sat on the front porch, watching my father (who had been celebrating Saturday night) come up the street. He was walking a bit funny and when he reached the front steps, he kind of sat down and went to sleep on the steps. Bobby and I sat, me trying desperately to ignore the snoring. Finally, Bobby said "should you do something?" and I said "about what?" Bobby got up, walked around my father and left. We didn't have a second date. And I went in the house, leaving my father on the steps, sleeping away. My first date. Ahhh, memories are great, are they not?
The other picture I posted today is the sight I see every sunny, spring day at Phipps. We have benches outside the conservatory and these three or four men show up every day to meet and talk. They sit on the bench for two hours, looking over Flagstaff Hill, talking. Every day. I often wonder what they are talking about. The weather? The status of the Pirates? who seem to be even worse this year, losing one game 20-0 The playoff games for the Pens? The young ladies sunbathing on Flagstaff Hill? It's nice to see them. Every day that the sun is out. Doesn't matter how cold, they sit and talk for two hours.
The butterflies are out at Phipps. Well, some of them are out. An inordinate number of them seem to be dying very quickly. And one got into the fern room which necessitated me racing about with the butterfly net, much to the amusement of the children in the room. I didn't catch it, but Ray did. He is the champion butterfly catcher and butterfly expert.
Big day in the 'burgh today...marathon, Pitt graduation, Pens playoff, religious walk. Pens are playing the Montreal Canadians. So, my afternoon will be in front of the television cheering on the Pens. GO PENS. Have a lovely Sunday!