Keep it down or I'll give you a smack!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

The long and winding road

Time for a little catch up of what has been going on...

So leading into the weekend the only thing that was planned was a golf outing on Sunday with the boys. So we made our way over to Lost Nation for a round. Ron and I both played pretty well on the front nine as we both shot 38 on the front side. I did not start the back in such great shape. But we had played about 12 holes before Mother Nature decided to halt our round. We tried to play on through the early sprinkle but then the skies opened and I made the suggestion to head in towards the clubhouse. We drove the cart back and found a dry hiding spot under a picnic canopy. But after a loud roar of thunder and bolt of lightning struck down and scared the crap out of all of us, we decided to get under some better cover. The story we heard in the clubhouse was that the lightning struck a tree somewhere about 200 yards from where we were hiding. So that killed the golf for the rest of the day. Ron and I stopped off at Beef O’Brady’s for some lunch and a few beers before calling it a day. I went home took a little nap and watched some golf. So that was pretty darn exciting!

Monday was a brutal day at work. I think half of the office had taken it as a vacation day. And apparently so had our stores. It was just a super slow day. Ron and I went and grabbed some lunch down in Tower City and then killed some more time by walking around and browsing some of the stores for a solid hour or so. Then after checking back in and looking busy for another hour or so we went and had a little workout. Mercifully we split out of work at 3:30 and shut it down for the day.

The excitement of Monday was that Coach and Melissa had hit the ground somewhere around noon so we made some plans to go and see the Lake County Captains game. We made it over to Classic Park around 6:30 and grabbed a couple of adult beverages as we caught up on old times with a baseball game in the background. Post game plans were to catch up with Randy and hang out at his boat dock and build a fire and throw back some more frosty beverages. We made a stop at Captains Club to meet up with Ron and Marie to have a beer before making our way to the boat. It was a pretty nice little set up at the end of a canal with a nice dock and picnic area. We took a ride down the canal and out onto Lake Erie but from all of the recent rains there were tree limbs all over the place and Randy decided that it probably wasn't the wisest idea to open the boat up without being able to see so great at night. So we did a couple of loops around and headed back to the dock. We sat around the fire for a while before the skies opened up and ruined our party. It was getting pretty late anyway and we turned in for the night.

Tuesday July 4th! Today is Mikes birthday so we had made plans to go and see the Tribe vs. Yankees and do some downtown Cleveland touristy things. I woke up sort of early and did a little work on my laptop and we made our plans to head downtown around 1:00pm or so. We drove down and parked the car next to Browns stadium and walked around while Melissa took some pictures and we soaked up the sights. I actually had not been to the Rock Hall for a while. They currently have a Bob Dylan exhibit going on. Maybe one of these days I will have to take a walk though and see some of the new exhibits. Melissa stopped in the gift shop and picked up a couple souvenirs for her dad.

After that we then drove through the deserted Flats area and just sort of drove around some of the downtown Cleveland areas and did some more sight seeing. We decided to park the car in the area of Jacob’s field and set out on foot. We made our way over to Tower City mall for a new hat for Mike. After that we decided to grab a bite to eat before the game. We decided on Winking Lizard for our dining excursion. It was pretty crowded with a lot of the Yankee fans in town. So we had a little wait for our table but we got ended up getting a table on the outdoor patio so we could people watch while we ate our meal.

After dinner we made it over to Jacob’s field for the game. We had seats up in what is now known as Pronkville or the right field mezzanine. The game was a good time as the Indians just laid the wood to the Yankees and ended up winning 19-1. Take that Yankees! We decided to call it a night around 10:00 since I had to work on Wednesday plus we had been on the go for the last couple of days. I also had to take my dad to the airport on Wednesday morning for his 7:00am flight. It was pretty rough getting up around 4:30am.

Wednesday and Thursday were pretty calm in my world. Mike and Melissa had plans to do some stuff with Mike’s family, so I did some laundry and just hung around the house both nights. I was actually trying to do some repair work to my PC. I launched some sort of virus and messed it up pretty good. I do have it back up and running now but it’s not 100%. It still needs some more work.

Friday Ron had come up with the idea of going to Ferrante’s winery for some dinner. We met up at Beef O’ Brady’s for a couple of drinks before making the trip out east to wine country.
The participants were: Ron and Marie - Mike and Melissa - Matt and Pam - And Me!
Ferrante’s doesn’t take reservations so we had to wait for a little while for our table for 7. They have a nice patio area though with a guy playing guitar and singing. Oh yeah and the wine helps to pass the time as well. The highlight of waiting was he did play “Sweet Caroline” so we all got to bah-bah-bah along with him. Good times. I ordered up a bottle of chardonnay to have with dinner of chicken and pasta. It was very good. I think everybody seemed to enjoy their meals as well. We all had some good laughs and enjoyed dinner. And then Ron was nice enough to treat everybody to dinner.

After dinner we decided to head over to the Firehouse in Willoughby for some post dinner activities. We had a nice table out on the patio and have some drinks to kick back and relax. I know that I had drank my fair share of wine and I didn’t slow down when we were at the Firehouse. The Blue Moon’s were going down so well that Monge and myself were demonstrating some yoga and Pilates moves for the viewing pleasure of anybody that was interested in watching. Monge had met up with us at the Firehouse. I had not seen him in at least a couple of years. He has been living in Indiana and coaching baseball there. I guess he’s back now but I didn’t get the story as to why he was back. We finally decided that we had enough for the evening and made our way home. I know that I was a little fuzzy on the late night details after I had more than my fair share of beverages over the course of the evening so I'm not even sure what time we called it a night.

Saturday morning Mike had the opportunity to play in a 3 on 3 basketball tournament so he was out the door early to do that. I had woke up sort of early but laid back in bed and fell back asleep until around 10:30 or so. I lazily hung out for a little while before calling Melissa around 11:00 to see if she wanted to go and watch Mike play. Once we got ready I picked her up and we made our way over there by around 11:30 or so. By the time we had arrived they had played their games and the tournament was already over. We hung out for a little while and watched some guys playing hoops for a little while but we had missed the action. From what I was told we didn’t miss much as they got blown out of every game. So after that I came back home and just hung out for a little while and dozed off and on while watching golf on TV.

Mike called and said we had the option to go and meet up with Randy and he was going to take us out to Fairport Harbor on his boat for dinner.
Tonight’s players: Randy and wife Jamie - Mike and Melissa - Mike (Schwarz) and his wife Lana - And me (sort of a theme here)
We made our way to the dock by 6:15 so that could make it there and back before it got too dark. So we took the ride out to a joint called Harbor Town Point. It was a little restaurant right on the lake. Randy had warned us that it wasn’t a real high class place. But it was pretty crowded so I figured that it couldn’t be all that bad. We ordered some food and drinks and waited for a while and just hung out and talked. As we waited I overheard the waitress saying that they were not going to be taking any more food orders for a while. I had never heard of a restaurant saying that. “Um yeah we’re too busy so you can’t order any food right now.” Luckily we had already placed our order. When we did get our food we were a little disappointed. Mike had ordered a steak and shrimp special, but the steak was a little on the small and thin side. I had ordered a perch dinner that was a little over cooked. Melissa tried some prime rib and I think she was probably the happiest at our table. Jamie had ordered a BLT that had one small piece of bacon and hardly any tomato. So dinner left quite a bit to be desired for most of us.

After dinner it was starting to get dark so we got back on the boat and made our way towards the dock before it got too dark. Once we were back on land we just kicked it on the deck for a while and had some beers and told some stories. Randy is a Wickliffe policeman so he told us a couple of tales about some of the interesting things that he sees at work. But it was nice and relaxing end to the evening. I think everybody was pretty worn out after a long week so we made our way and called it a night somewhere around 12:30.

Sunday Mike and Mel were heading back to the beaches North Carolina and I used it as a day of relaxation and writing. I wanted to take a minute and reflect on a couple things. I really liked having Mike home for a few days. I enjoy hanging out and laughing with him. We get along really well and always seem to have a good time. I am happy to see him and Melissa together. She seems like a really nice girl and I hope that everything works out for both of them. I am pretty sad to see them go back home. I will definitely have to get my ass down to their place and see what Wilmington is all about.

I hung out at home Sunday and watched the World Cup final. I think I wanted to see France win but watching Zidane head butt a guy in the 110th minute was just a little crazy. Then I watched the women’s golf match play. Nice to see another first time winner in the LPGA but when is it going to be Natalie’s turn? Maybe next week in Toledo when I go to see her? I also watched the men’s golf. Another first time winner in Trevor Immelman. I always liked him since he was a Nike golf player. Plus he had a really hot girl following him around at Firestone. And then I watched the end of the NASCAR race and saw Jeff Gordon win for the second time in 3 weeks even though it may be a little tainted with the late race bump of Kenseth. But that’s racin if you ask me.

And tomorrow it’s back to the grind of work. We have another warehouse going live with our project at work so that will be fun of course. Should make for an interesting week. The good news is that we are planning to make the trip up to Toledo this weekend and check out the LPGA’s Jamie Farr Classic.
I think that’s enough words for now…hasta manana.