This is one Mean Old Lady!

This is one Mean Old Lady!
Self-portrait: 'Quilter on Fire'

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A Trip in September

When we finally made up our minds to Just Do It, our plans fell together beautifully.  We did not manage to see every single person we had hoped to (we weren't the only ones waiting until Labor Day had passed to take a vacation) but we did have a delightful time seeing the friends who were available.  

A six-hour drive for our first leg took us via back roads to Paducah.  New Garmin had her own ideas about the route, which cost us an extra hour of driving in the event; we considered changing her name to Bad Garmin!  DHubby dropped me at The National Quilt Museum at 3 p.m. and went to find the motel to check in and nap.  I spent a wonderful couple of hours viewing the Quilt Japan exhibit before meeting the DHubby and going to dinner at Max's Brick Oven on the Market Square, the scene of many enjoyable meals.  Our initial decision to dine outside was revised by the flies (we were not alone in fleeing inside.)  

Second stop:  Cincinnati !-- and a chance for some quality time with BFFs Joe and Barbara. Besides the incredibly lovely weather, there was the easy feeling that comes with 34 years of shared experiences.  Shiva the cat was not particularly delighted to see us, but oh well.   A neighborhood walk, The Nature Center, a delightful deli, a tour of the yard (for me, of course!) and then The Boys got deeply into some wiring and setting up and troubleshooting with Western Digital and speakers and other mysteries.  

Then on to our 'home town' of Solon, Ohio--east of Cleveland.  We strolled through Chagrin Falls--still a lovely village, but of course showing changes that one would have to expect after 12 years.  It's definitely a trendy destination for lunching and shopping these days.  Chagrin Valley Hardware was still there!   We walked up the hill to the library, one of our family's favorite and oft-frequented spots. Inside there were many changes--ranks of computers, fewer stacks, a revised Children's Room (sob!)--but at least one employee I knew (and who claimed to remember me.)    

Our neighbors and dearest friends, the Halbergs, greeted us with open arms (not to mention barking dogs, leaping goats, frisky horses, and a yard filled with flowers.)  What a joy to see familiar faces and hear remembered laughter and voices; letters are great, but a visit is better! Familiar scenes-- just with bigger trees, grown-up daughters, and perhaps some white hair here and there.  (Must figure out how to get the photos from the iPad to this computer....or maybe I can call this blog up on the iPad and insert some pix...Nope.  I e-mailed them to myself, saved them to the Desktop, and then inserted them using the Edit Post function.  Sheesh.) 

One can't even be jealous; what would be the point?

Remember, this is just the porch, not even the flowerbeds

Did you realize that ivy actually blooms?  I didn't.  

The view down into the pastures, riding ring, with horses in the shady grove.  Our children used to play on this swing set!

 We did drive past our former home.  Couldn't see much from the road, but there were weeds in the garden taller than I am. Not sure if the asparagus bed still thrives, but at least one apple tree was loaded with fruit.  Ah, well....
Carole has the greenest of green thumbs!

I might characterize our day-and-a-half as a series of 'power visits.'  We managed dinner at the Halberg table, Saturday breakfast with dear Judy and her (new) hubby Jeff, lunch with the Halbergs, dinner with faithful correspondent and devoted reader Diane (still not sure how we spent an evening without talking about books!), and finally breakfast on the Halbergs' porch Sunday morning before we departed, heading East.  

Here is Lake Chatauqua, seen from the Welcome Center in upstate New York.  We had a breezy lunch al fresco before driving on to Allentown, NY, to stay with Raye and Jack and their two darling pets, Bonnie and Clyde (small dogs with big personalities!)  More stories (and definitely more pix) in the next installment.  

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