Monday, October 31, 2011

Family and Wild Weather

I left Clio, MI with my parents about 10:20 am on October 27th heading for Annapolis, MD. We left in the rain. We had tons of traffic. Dad drove until we got off the Ohio Turnpike and I took over for a couple of hours. We stopped in Morgantown, WV. Most of the ride was uneventful...getting to a hotel was another story altogether. Dad even refused to go get something to eat. Mom and I ventured out with me at the helm...would you believe the only fast food restaurant they had was McDonald's???? This is the home of West Virginia University...we are talking college town. It is also where my great Uncle Pete Mitter grew up. Something I hadn't known and just for kicks I checked the phone book and there are several Mitters still in the area.

I am not a fan of Best Western. It seems like every bad stay I have is at a Best Western. The one in Morgantown was not the exception. The guys on one side of my room partied until after 3 am. I could not call the desk as the phone didn't work. I had already had to move the night stand and plug in the lights so they would work. Someone who stayed there in September, 2011 had left their survey in the room and they didn't have lights between the beds either. I'm guessing no one had read the survey. Also I could not regulate the heat. It was either too cold or sufficatingly hot. So when Dad knocked on my door at 6:45 I wasn't too pleased. Breakfast there is a diabetics nightmare. But I managed.

We arrived in Annapolis by noon. They let us check in early at the hotel. Did I mention we were staying at another Best Western? This staff was so much nicer and the entire stay was much more pleasant. Heat could be regulated and it's a good thing. But more on that later.

We got out the GPS to navigate us to a Denny's for lunch. Between the traffic and the one way streets it was a nightmare. Dad gave up driving. I took over for the rest of the time we were in Annapolis. We eventually found the restaurant had a nice lunch, by the time we got back we had to change to go to the wedding rehearsal.

We were able to get to North Beach, MD and find the church. We were also an hour early so drove back to Chesapeake Beach....two miles to Karen and Anthony's home where we were all going to gather for dinner afterward. We spent 45 min. with them and got to see the house before going back to the church. It was still raining and cold. Rehearsal was fun, we got lots of photos. We went back to the house there were probably 30 of us there for dinner. It was a good time. We got back to the hotel around 10 pm.

I got up the next morning and went to have my hair done. You get what you pay for. It wasn't right but it would do. Then I made my way back to the hotel spent some time with Mom and Dad. We called my sister to wish her a happy birthday. Then it was time to change for the wedding. Photos were starting at 1:30pm and we had to be there. Did I mention it was raining? Dad actually drove out to the church. We waited in the car until time then we went in. Photos with Karen took until about 2:05pm. Anthony arrived at 2:15pm for his photo shoot. This is the point where my camera stopped functioning. The wedding started promptly at 3pm with my dad walking my mom down the aisle. Grandparents are seated right before the mothers. This is where Dad's camera finally quit working...battery dead. I was taking photos with my cell phone. My nephew walked his other grandmother down the aisle. The wedding was wonderful. The priest said he'd never had a wedding that was so much fun. We had more photos, then we drove back to the hotel.

There we had the front desk call for a cab. Parking in downtown Annapolis is scarce at best and getting there is a nightmare. So, we took a cab to the Federal House where dinner was going to be. Being an old historic building the Federal House does not have an elevator. With Dad's help Mom was able to make the stairs to the second floor. Hors d'oeuvres were at 6pm beer and wine were part of the meal. Mixed drinks were cash. I started the evening with a white zinfandel....I could not drink it. I don't know when I've had a worse wine. Broke out my wallet and got myself a rum and Coke. Things were looking up. The bride and groom arrived about 7pm. They had planned to greet everyone at each table, but the wait staff was already delivering the salads. During salads the Maid of Honor and Best Man (or woman in this case) made their speeches. The main course was served. It was wonderful. However, if you are going to steam vegetables they need to be hot all the way through. Other than that, it was good. Anthony offered up prayer before we ate the main meal. The bride and groom were able to mingle after dinner. The crowd began thinning by 9 pm as many had come from out of town and had to return.

The worst storm in 35 years hit on Saturday. The rain turned to snow on our way from the church to the hotel after the wedding. Another reason for calling a cab. Harrisburg, PA got about 6 inches of snow. Farther north it was worse. There were 2.5 million people without power in the northeast by Sunday morning. We were packed, had breakfast and in the car by 8:20am. Dad had started the car to clear the ice off the windows. The roads were clear. We did stop in Maryland in the mountains and there was about 4 inches of snow on the ground. It had been a heavy wet snow and we could see where it had downed some trees. They had beautiful color on the way out.

Dad drove from 8:20 am to 2pm, we were near Cambridge, OH by then. We stopped for lunch and to gas the car. I took over driving at 3:05pm and drove until we hit the rest area in Linden, MI on US 23 just south of Flint. It was about 7:45 pm. I got out of the car and commented to Dad that we'd hit a heat wave. It was so much warmer than it had been all week-end. I came out and low and behold it was raining. Dad took over driving. We stopped for dinner at Bob Evan's on Pierson Rd. then headed the last leg home. It was good to be home.

I drove back to West Branch this morning. Most of my day has been spent uploading over 100 wedding photos. I tried doing them in order from the rehearsal through the wedding and after, but when they uploaded from my phone they got all mixed up. I just know I am done with them for now.

Love you both, Karen and Anthony Attardo. May God bless you with many years of happiness.


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