Monday, August 8, 2011

A week in a day

Last week, I descended upon the Midwest to partake of my high school reunion and sundry vacationing activities. Here is the story of what transpired.

Friday, July 29
I got up at 5 in the morning to get a head start on work. My boyfriend picked me up at 1, and we commenced the drive westward. Being a native Californian, throughout the trip he continued to refer to my homeland the heartland as the "East Coast," much to the amusement of my Midwestern friends and family. Late that evening, we arrived at the home of my mother's husband, in which he had kindly allowed us to stay while we were in town. There we spent a rollicking night of sleeping.

Saturday, July 30
This was the day of my reunion, but I had several Ohio errands that had to come first. 1) visit my dad and stepmom and brother for breakfast, 2) go thrift store shopping (got brand new shoes for 8$), 3) show the boyfriend my third and final childhood home, introduce him to the dog, the cats, and the chickens, and find my jewelry collection, 3) take the boyfriend to Toledo's favorite restaurant, Tony Packo's (which he didn't like), 4) kill some time, 5) go to high school reunion.
     I was scared I would have to socialize (and indeed I did, but mainly I just got ignored like I did in high school), but I survived the presence of my 10 other classmates and had a good time with my high school best friend (hi, Amy!), and got some lemon bars for dessert, which made it all worth it.

Sunday, July 31
Drove with the boyfriend to the shores of Crystal Lake, Northern Michigan, where I met up with my mumsy, my stepdad, and stepsister. I had a really yummy egg salad sandwich. Some swimming occurred, and I actually participated, which is rare. There were games and dinner and good ol' family stuff. Here are some pictures of the days that followed.

Monday, August 1
At this point, all the days start blurring together because that's what happens when you're in paradise, right? I think we loafed around in the lodgings until early afternoon and then went antique shopping forever. Except that it wasn't forever, because at 4:00, we got ice cream. I think there was some more swimming after that, but my memory sure is hazy. No, there was no alcohol involved.

Tuesday, August 2
This day was particularly rainy. Yoga in the morning was canceled. In fact, any outdoors activities were nixed. Now that I think about it, this was the day we went shopping. So what did we do on Monday? Ah, yes, the lighthouse. On Monday, we went to the lighthouse and some gardens. But we got ice cream every afternoon, so that part stays the same. Tuesday night, we returned to the lodge to find a bat sitting in front of the bathroom. After a startling moment in which he flew over our heads, we managed to capture him in a wastebasket and put him outside. He did not want to exit the wastebasket, so we left it there overnight. My mother says you can't feel bat bites, and I probably got bitten without knowing it and now am dying of rabies. So if you don't see any entries here after a few days, you'll know why.

Wednesday, August 3
This was the big day, when we climbed the famous Sleeping Bear Dunes in the morning and topped off our day with a long bike ride. And of course, more ice cream. The resort held a barbecue, but since I was already stuffed with my pre-dinner dessert and was also a vegetarian, that was not a particularly exciting moment. That night, my boyfriend and I stayed at a different motel where there were cats. And a hammock.

Thursday, August 4
Tubing down the river was the plan for this day. It was accomplished, but in much more time than expected.  Reader Geoff must be informed that mating dragonflies landed on my hand during the tubing trip. I also broke my sandals, which had served me faithfully for the last 8 years or so. Early on, in fact, as soon as I was too far away from the car to go back, I remembered I had forgotten to put sunscreen on the backs of my legs, so I resolved to keep them hidden safely underneath me. But midway through the trip, I saw the fronts of my legs were burning, so I decided to turn over to prevent any further damage. Consequently, I ended up with a full-body sunburn that made me want to die that first day, make some serious resolutions about bringing sunblock everywhere the second day, use up half a bottle of aloe gel and another half bottle of Advil by the third day, and get seriously tired of the whole mess by the fourth day. The peeling started on the fifth day.

Friday, August 5
This morning, I sang "Happy Birthday to Me!" in my head. OK, actually I sang "ow ow ow" and had a great deal of trouble getting out of bed. Nonetheless, we drove back to Ohio under the influence of ibuprofen, swung by Detroit, hung out with my dad, went to the mall in a fruitless search for the perfect replacement pair of flip-flops, and had... Mr. Freeze! The best ice cream in the history of the universe!! Happy Birthday to Me!

Saturday, August 6
We drove back to Maryland, making a side trip to Cleveland to meet with one of my college friends. My boyfriend was not impressed with either Detroit or Cleveland, even though he got a free T-shirt in the former and very cheap cherries and strawberries in the latter. Then we continued driving. This took a while, because we did not time our bathroom/aloe/fuel stops very efficiently. But here I am, and here I'll stay.

And, um, sorry if you can't see the photos, because Facebook's privacy settings are still impossible.