Get me the F**K outta here!!!
I traveled to a lovely garden spot on the east coast of our dear Nation. I'm not revealing names or places for the protection of the innocent.
And if you can find anyone innocent in this crew, I'll give you money.
The Flight In
First of all, it takes forever. You start fairly early in the morning, just to show up. Then the flight is meant to last five and a half hours. During which (if you're willing to pay) you can have a burger-y thing or canned tuna and applesauce. If you're not willing to pay, a cookie and pretzels are what you have to look forward to, along with all the free water or soda or juice they can stock on the plane. All of which sounds OH, so appealing. There's also five dollar beer or wine or cocktails. Which I should have had, except I'm trying to do homework or entertain my brain with a fairly kinky novel set in the sex-trade industry of Thailand. Bangkok 8. Great mystery novel, and darn weird.
So, as we're approaching our destination, the pilot comes on to tell us (in faint, static-y wisps of english that still required translation via the stewardess) that we would be circling for a little while, as there was terrible wind shear, and an attempt at a normal landing might end up with all of us nose-down in the Atlantic ocean. So we circled.
Then an approach was begun, from waaaaaay far out there.
The flight ended up being about an hour longer than originally anticipated.
We then split up into our respective cars, me with Robert W, Tom D with Amy G, and Heidi G with Jim R. (I think - I may have the dance cards mixed up) I immediately misdirected Robert (who was being closely followed by one of the other cars) onto the wrong offramp from the airport. We quickly recovered, and found ourselves on the right turnpike, heading south. Got to the hotel, checked in, showered, scoured, and headed out for the evening to a restaurant called Charlie Brown's (which I'd never been in). Drinking begins in earnest for the trip.
Food and Drink
Jim is the teetotaler of the bunch, and speaks of his drinking days with a certain fondness. Heidi dives into a watermelon (I think - pink for sure) martini. Amy orders water?!? I order a guiness draft. Robert and Tom order a pitcher of pee. AKA Coors Light. And proceed to drink it down in less than five minutes.
Another pitcher. Then large slabs of meat.
The work we do at the location, well, the less said the better, since it only makes sense to those of us doing it, and to outsiders it might sound like a big yawn. Or a big clusterf**k. Except that it all went pretty well. There was, however, flatulence - hence the above link.
Our first breakfast (the next day) is at a strange little countrified place that used to be someone's living room, or maybe their sunporch. The food involves various remakes of eggs, pork and velveeta. Comfort food for people who want to become uncomfortable. We actually eat here more than once.
We also eat at a little Italian place that appears to make a dozen different types of pizza, grinders, and salads, and they bring the food out to you. Genuinely Italian, the food has depth, subtlety and FLAVOR, and I could have easily gone through twenty slices of pizza without getting bored. I might have died, but I'd have died happy. We only manage to eat here twice.
Dinner conversation at TGI Fridays: "Throw her nuts on mine," "Put it in my mouth, now," the Dessert Exchange, "Open up." And my favorite, a new band name: "Jerry Springer Spaniel." Severe drinking. Margaritas, mojitos and beer (oh, my!).
The next evening, on our way to the best food of the trip, the conversation gets, well... a little of the old TMI. Nipples referred to as "party hats," certain sexual practices, High-Def pornography, "a** pimples," small hands, "a little head is OK"...
You get the picture.
The food is fantabulous! It's a BYO restaurant, so we first hit up the little tiny liquor store down the strip mall for six packs and airplane bottles of liquor. I find a beer called Hopnotic IPA, which is pretty darn tasty. Others are ordering Coke and adding booze to it. The food... the food...
Raw oysters and clams on the half shell, a ceviche of squid, scallops, and crab claws. Shrimp with a very decent cocktail sauce. And deep-fried rock shrimp with some kind of hot sweet sauce. Everyone orders large entrees, too. One order brings up yet another strange quote of the day, possibly the best one of the trip:
"Easier to get rid of veal than crabs."
I can't top that.
We leave a day early. Another long day full of sleep and homework, and a lovely novel called Clowngirl, by Monica Drake, whom Chuck Palahniuk refers to as his "Arch-Enemy." Which is quite a compliment, coming from him.
Goodnight for now.