Monday, March 19, 2012

New City, Old Memories (Part 2)

Day 19 of 31 at TWT!
Yesterday, I was all excited to write about Saturday's trip to the NCAA tournament with my family.  Of course, as often happens when I write, I had too much to say.  In fact, I wrote a full-length post before I even started talking about the tournament!  So here's part 2, starting with our arrival to Pittsburgh:

10:30ish a.m.: After navigating our way around a sea of green hats, green shirts, and green costumes awaiting the St. Patrick's Day parade (thanks to the GPS!), we arrive at the arena and its parking garage.  While the rest of us rummage in the trunk, Daddy emerges from the car in his "net hat" (It's like a headband with an upside-down basketball net that covers his head, with "Ohio State" on the headband part!), which he's kept hidden in some pocket all morning.  (He loves goofy surprises.)  "You told me you lost that!" my mom screeches indignantly.  "I spent half an hour last night and then again this morning digging through all the closets for it!"  "Oh come on, you should've known better than to believe him!" I admonish her.  Daddy just guffaws.

Still laughing, we walk out of the parking garage.  "We'll have to see if we can find the restaurant where the Buckeye Bash is," Daddy smirks, waiting for us to realize it's right across the street!  Husband and I go in to get a table while my parents head off to the arena's will-call to pick up the tickets.

"Are you here part of the event?" the bouncer asks, noticing our instruments. "Umm, are we going to card the band members?" he mutters to a waitress.  Oh no, I didn't bring my I.D... Since I never drink alcohol, it never occurs to me that some bars want to check I.D. upon entry.  Well, here goes nothing... "I don't have an I.D." I tell him.  "Oh, are you not 21 yet?" he sputters, with an apologetic smile. "I'm 27! I just don't have an I.D. with me," I reply.  He grins like he's not quite sure he believes me and let us through.

11:15 a.m. "The band bus just pulled up outside!" my mom tells Husband and me.  We jump up from the table and run out to the street to warm up with the band.  Assistant Director hugs us, to laughs and smiles from the band members we still know.  Once we've provided entertainment for everyone in the street (otherwise known as "warming up"), we squeeze into the tiny bar and thread our way upstairs.  Our music thunders through the bar, hyping up the Buckeye fans and astonishing all the locals who were just out to eat for St. Patrick's Day!

Ready to play, to the delight of fans and the amusement of the locals!
12:00 p.m.: After performing, we throw our horns in the trunk and head off to the arena.  Once there, we meet up with Funny Uncle Mike, my aunt, and one of my mom's co-workers and his wife.  After walking 3/4 of the arena in search of a souvenir stand (They realllly didn't  have nearly enough!), we finally buy some T-shirts and then settle into our seats to watch the first game, Syracuse vs. Kansas St.

Check off another arena on my list!
2:45ish p.m.: Finally, our game is ready to begin!  We yell and scream and wave the free pom-poms we got at the Buckeye Bash.  The team proceeds to play as though they are half-asleep. At halftime, my mom's co-worker (just one section over from us) points out that there's practically a whole row of seats open right below them.  The four of us, plus my aunt and uncle, head over and we're all able to sit together for the second half!  Luckily, the team comes out of halftime somewhat more ready to play basketball and they manage to pull out a win.  The Bucks are headed to the Sweet 16!

5:00ish p.m.: In need of some dinner after screaming our heads off, all eight of us head back to the tiny bar from earlier, hoping that many people won't know about it.  We're right: they have a big table open that seems to be waiting just for us! As we walk in, the bouncer remembers us.  He quips, "I know, you're 27!" and grins at me. He compliments Daddy on the net hat.  Dinner is delicious and full of fun stories and boisterous laughter.

A yummy end to the day!!!
9:50 p.m. Although we're only about 45 minutes from home, Daddy realizes that we need gas, so we stop at a familiar exit.  "Let's go here..." Daddy grins, "because it's St. Patrick's Day and I need a Shamrock Shake!!!"  Only Daddy would manage to find a gas station with a McDonalds attached so we could have Shamrock Shakes at 10 p.m.  (Now, you have to understand two things: 1. Daddy LOVES food.  No really, he loves it more than anyone you've ever met.  2. My family is obsessed with these delicious mint shakes that McDonalds only offers at this time of year!)

10:30 p.m.: Our green porchlights are shining into the darkness once more as my parents drop us off, 16 hours after we left home!


  1. What a day! I'm exhausted just reading this. Your family sounds like a lot of fun, just my kind of people.
    Question for you: Have you ever eaten at Barleys Pub downtown Columbus?

    1. No we haven't but I know we've seen it around. How did you know about it?

    2. Just now remembering to see if you'd been there. I attended Reading Recovery conference for nine years in downtown Columbus. Loved the pub (awesome salad with dried cherries and blue cheese crumbles). Soups good too. It's been about six years since I've been there. I hope they are not out of business.

  2. Green shakes! As someone who loves mint and ice-cream, I am very intrigued and hungry. How fun that you performed!

    1. ooh, you have to go to McDonald's next March then! They're soooo yummy -- a yearly tradition with my family! This year my dad texted me towards the end of Feb. to say he had already gotten one!

  3. I like the way you moved this story through time with the time stamps. I felt like I was checking in with you throughout the day.


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