The weekend before last we flew up to Des Moines to spend time with Elise’s family and friends. We flew out Thursday morning and landing in Des Moines early in the evening. That night Grandma and Eric came over, Joanne cooked corn on the cob and Steve grilled brats. We stayed up late and chatted before all turning in for the night.
On Friday Steve and I went to Best Buy for a wireless router that I picked up as an early birthday present for Steve. Elise and Joanne wound up taking Maly to walk-in clinic because she came down with a bug the day prior. The doctor gave her Amoxicillin which pretty much wiped out the bug before week’s end.
On Friday evening Steve and Joanne dropped Elise and me off at the Iowa State Fair. We quickly found a bench and people watched until 7:15 when we met Elise’s brother, Eric. We stopped at a beer tent before heading to the stadium to watch Alice Cooper. Yes. THE Alice Cooper.
The show was absolutely awesome. And I was the geek who pulled out my iPhone and tried to write down every song title within the first 10 seconds of each song’s start. Despite the 100+ degree temperature and 9,000% humidity, it was a concert in every sense of the word. It was a show that few bands can pull off any more – a show with a ”plot”. It was a concert the way concerts used to be. And for once in a long, long time, we left (sans the ability to control the conversation volume of our voices) knowing that it was money well spent on a show.
Elise, Eric and I grabbed a couple beers at the fair after the concert and then Eric drove us back to Steve and Joanne’s for the night.
On Saturday we all got up and went to the farmer’s market. I bought a half gallon of real root beer and Elise bought some kitty crack from Three Dog Bakery (next time I think about it, I’ll film Riley raving about his kitty crack).
That afternoon it was brought to my attention that Steve and Joanne have DSL so the router that I got wouldn’t work with their rig. Steve and I were off to Best Buy to find a DSL modem/router combo. No luck. So we returned the router that I’d bought and then hit CompUSA.
We found a DLS modem/router combo for a good price and I picked up a MacBook for Elise. Steve and I went back to the house and I spent the rest of the afternoon setting up the wireless network in the house.
That evening we went to Prairie Meadows to watch the horse races. I’m not a gambling man by nature but I was feeling lucky so I decided to bet. And there’s a reason why I’m not a gambling man. I wasn’t counting our money but I can tell you this – I left with a lot less than I showed up with.
4:30 a.m. came early on Sunday. Elise drove me to the airport to catch my 6:30 flight. I nodded in and out of consciousness from Des Moines to Houston with the Sky Mall catalog in my lap. Luckily I kept falling asleep, otherwise I might have bought a chocolate fountain or a solar powered neck tie organizer.
I had a great time with my in-laws in Des Moines and wished I could’ve stayed longer. Elise and Maly stayed back all last week which left me a week as a guy in his temporary bachelor pad.
It was good to have some down-time, which ultimately meant doing a lot of un-distracted work around the house. I finished up the baseboards in both bathrooms and around the kitchen bar. I gave the yard some much-needed attention. I washed and detailed both trucks. I cleaned the garage. I got a lot of work (as in the job that pays the bills) done. And I put some well-earned hours into Guitar Hero.
So, it’s been a busy few weeks lately. Catching Maly’s eye at the airport the past Sunday was priceless. She did a double-take and if she could speak full sentences, I’m sure she would have said to herself, “Oh my god! It’s… it’s… it’s… DADDY!!!!!”
I missed my girls. I’m glad they’re home and I’m glad we all got to spend time with family in Des Moines.
Photos are here.