We got up super early yesterday morning and headed up to Cincinnati, where we arrived 5 hours earlier than planned and so toured the Newport Aquarium before meeting up with our dear friend Maggie and taking her Jungle Jim's and buying a bunch of groceries and then going back to her place where Jimi cooked a gourmet dinner while Maggie and I loaded the entire contents of her basement into the magically expanded rear compartment of Jimi's truck (in which, have I mentioned?, the AC blows crazy cold). Then we went to a movie and dinner at a 5-star restaurant before magically snapping our fingers and ending up home, snug as bugs in rugs before dark.
Obviously, I'm making that shit up.
We were due into Cincy at noon. I crawled out of bed at 10:30. After my shower (which took longer than normal, of course, because it's Saturday, and that means I can wear capris or shorts, which means I have to shave my legs. Only just past the knee, though - no one else will see so it'll be fine.), I sent dear, sweet Maggie a text:
"I know it's a shock, but we're running late. New ETA approx. 1:30"
She immediately called me, and of course, she was sweet and kind about our lazy ways. We were on the road 20 minutes later, and the trip was smooth, considering the AC in Jimi's truck went out a few weeks back. Thankfully, yesterday was cool and overcast, with the sun only peaking out for short periods, and the humidity really wasn't bad. And we didn't blow a tire. So the trip was fine.
We met up and Maggie led us to her new apartment. She's moving in a few weeks from the house she's lived in for the last 21 years to this modern "apartment community". It's a great place and I'm so glad she found a space in which she's going to love being. We're driving up the weekend after she moves to help at whatever tasks she puts us to, most likely painting and unpacking and opining and laughing. (We do the last two best.)
After we measured the new place (ever the planner, this will aid her in planning where she's going to place the furniture), she treated us to lunch at a local steakhouse. Here's the thing, though: I thought WE were buying HER lunch. So here's what I ordered:
Something-Pear Margarita $8*
*I'm guessing. I didn't see a price when I ordered it, but it came with a little shaker thing with a "refill" drink.
Flo's Filet $15.49
with asparagus on the side $1.49
And I tried to order a loaded baked potato on the side, but Maggie had ordered two (one for now, one to go) because it was the only side she was interested in, so she told the guy to bring me her to go potato instead of adding $2.29 to the bill.
So when she reached for the check, I was all ONOUDONT. I told the waiter to bring a copy of the check and not let her pay, but she ended up paying the bill and I was all IMSORRYIMAPIG. I felt bad for the on-a-whim margarita. I don't even like margaritas, really. I was feeling extravagant and the pear part caught my fancy.
(Jimi, of course, ordered wisely, choosing only a baked potato and a bowl of french onion soup.)
So, after she treated us to the tasty lunch, we went back to her home, where she basically said "HERE - TAKE EVERYTHING IN MY BASEMENT!!!". But she said it in her super sweet voice, laughing and smiling the whole time. Jimi was like a kid on Christmas morning when she showed him the tool room. He was thrilled about the post-hole digger. We made out like bandits with shelving, sawhorses, outdoor tables, and an awesome butcher-block table that weighs a million pounds. "HERE - TAKE IT, TAKE IT!!! CAN YOU USE THIS?! YOU TAKE IT!!!" We felt like we were robbing her blind.
AND THEN, we're heading out, saying our good byes, and she's all: "HERE, I BOUGHT SOME BAGELS FOR YOU GUYS AND YOU SHOULD TAKE SOME HOME WITH YOU".
I think we're going to visit Maggie every weekend from now on.
We'd planned to be up there longer and maybe even do at bit of shopping at IKEA or Jungle Jim's or Trader Joe's, but reality was, after the truck was packed, it was PACKED. There was no squeezing anything else into that vehicle. As it was, I rode halfway back home with the cooler wedged uncomfortably between my legs and the center console, until Jimi stopped for my much-needed potty break and found a way to clip it in with some jumper cables to keep it from sliding and hitting him in the head after he wedged it in behind his headrest. So yeah, we were going to stay later, but after sweating my ass off loading, unloading, then reloading the truck, I was exhausted. I wanted a nap. And I think I'm a bit...um...whatever it is where you don't like being outside of your own home for long periods of time. I only don't feel that way when we're camping. I think it's probably a little fucked up, and there's probably something a little wrong with me, but I'm not concerned yet enough to go see anyone about it. So we headed back home around 7.
And then we got back to Louisville and Jimi took the exit past the one that would've gotten us home most quickly (so I believed, because it was the most comfortable route in my mind), but he insisted his way was just as quick or quicker. And we got all the way to the intersection where we were to turn onto our street, and the intersection was blocked with 5 or 6 police cars and several uniformed officers standing in the street directing all cars to u-turn and head back the opposite direction. Across the street, I watched vehicles coming from the opposite way turning right onto our street, and I asked an officer, pointing, "We live right there, can we just drive through here and go home, please?"
"No," he barked, "You have to turn back and go up ashland or woodlawn and circle back down 3rd. We've got a 5K race that's about to start, this is going to be shut down for 30 minutes, then it'll open back up, then it'll shut down for another 45 minutes or so."
This is 9:15 or so at night. It was dark. Who does a 5K race after dark? Without posting any signs or notices through the neighborhood at least a day or two in advance? (Oh, and did I mention? 3rd street was the "shorter" route I'd preferred, but I managed not to say ITOLDYOUSO.) After we doubled back and circled around, we saw that there was some sort of street party/festival thing going on that had most of Southern Parkway blocked off. If I wasn't so sleepy, I might've considered putting Finn on a leash and walking him down there, but I was tired and not interested in walking and there were a lot of kids and I didn't have any cash or know anyone. So instead, I came in, played with the puppy, read a bit, checked my Facebook, and went to bed at 11.
One of these days, I really will go to the Newport Aquarium. One of these days.