Wow. What a weekend! I think I will need an entire week to recuperate.
The flight to San Jose was uneventful. I was thinking my flights were short ones, until I realized I forgot to factor in time zone changes. Oops. But I really enjoyed the flight from Providence to Las Vegas. The landscape changes so drastically; it’s really quite amazing. We live in one beautiful country, folks.
Las Vegas cracked me up. You walk off the plane, and you’re immediately confronted by rows and rows of slot machines. Apparently they don’t wait for you to hit the casinos; you can gamble during your layover!
Catie was running a wee bit late in picking me up once I got to San Jose, but I didn’t mind in the slightest. The sun was shining, it was 70º, and I was in heaven. I sat on a bench and just absorbed the sunlight. Kurt says I look a little darker, which surprised me, but maybe he just means I don’t look quite as deathly pale as I normally do. I definitely tried to avail myself of the sun at every opportunity.
The first stop once Catie picked me up was Tracy’s house. I was the second to last person to arrive, which meant that I was bombarded by at least ten of my newest best friends that I had only known online prior to this. Kate saw me as soon as I walked in the door and bowled me over with an enormous hug, which helped to put me at ease. I was a bit overwhelmed at first. I must say, I wasn’t sure who a couple of my new friends were, but I quickly figured them all out once I got over being overwhelmed.
We had dinner the first night at a sushi place where Catie is a regular, and the waitresses all gathered around to sing her happy birthday in extremely high-pitched opera voices. It was so funny. My favorite part of the dinner was that I just sat there, and food appeared in front of me. And it was all incredibly delicious. Just thinking of it again is making my mouth water.
After dinner we had a cocktail party in the hotel where most of us were staying. All of my new friends are even more hilarious when drunk! I was good and drank only water, yet I still managed to wake up with a headache the next day. It’s completely unfair, I tell you! Tracy had bought everyone pink feather boas to wear, as pink is Catie’s favorite color, but by the end of the night the room was littered with pink feathers. I think I still have pink feathers in my suitcase!
The next day we gathered at Catie’s for a brunch, which was to die for. Lox and cream cheese on crusty bread, granny smith apples with bleu cheese crumbles, croissants, danishes, egg salad spread, jams, lemon curd… The food just went on and on. And the coffee!! The coffee was absolutely heavenly. I know I’m not supposed to have a whole lot of caffeine, but the coffee was so good I stopped caring. The entire brunch was so very gourmet and laid out so prettily as well.
We were all of us gathered in Catie’s back room, chatting away as women do, when all of a sudden Catie announced that the focus of the party was now shifting to me! I tried backing into a corner, but I was already in one and there was nowhere for me to go. Apparently Kurt had emailed Catie a couple of days before the party started and asked if there was any way she could throw me a baby shower while I was there. Her initial thought was no way, as it was so close to when people were going to start flying in, but the more she thought about it, she realized we were already scheduled for a craft day. We could just make crafts for me to take home to hang in the baby’s room!
I started bawling. I couldn’t help it! It was absolutely the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me. And to think that Catie voluntarily chose to put her birthday celebration on hold so I could have a baby shower….! Now that’s a friend, people.
Everyone in the room started tearing up too, but I was crying so hard I really couldn’t see. Finally Suzi came over and hugged me till I calmed down, and then someone started telling jokes, and we all started laughing.
Here’s the end result!
There will be 26 boxes once they’re completed, one for every letter of the alphabet. I made the K, of course. It’s the one with the most glitter. I think they all turned out so wonderfully, even though some of our group insisted they were not crafty people. They’re just all so lovely! I can’t pick out which one I like the most, though I love the fact that Kate featured a moon and star on hers to commemorate the tattoo of the same that I have on my back.
Sunday night we had dinner at a Spanish restaurant, where I had proper paella for the very first time. I was also able to taste sangria, but was then upset at myself because I wasn’t able to have more. It was so yummy, I wanted lots and lots more!
Throughout Sunday and Monday we said goodbye to some of our new friends, which made me tear up again. It’s so sad having such a short time with such awesome people. But I know they’re just an email away, which is good to know.
Monday we went for manicures and pedicures, only it was just a pedicure for me. I am a total convert now! My feet are so lovely and smooth now, though they were pretty smooth before I went, and my nails are painted so very prettily! It was heaven having my feet massaged as well. It’s like the lady knew exactly where all the good spots are. I definitely need to find me a pedicure place here in Newport and start having twice-monthly appointments.
And then Tuesday I came home. I was so sad to leave all my new friends, though I was looking forward to having a bit of a rest. It was such a fun time, but terribly exhausting as well. I had no problems at all on the flight home, except that we landed fifteen minutes late in Providence on a completely snow-covered runway. It made for a very interesting landing. Then we had to wait about ten minutes so they could move an empty aircraft that was parked at our gate. We also had a long drive home, as the weather was really bad and the roads weren’t plowed. I think it was 1:30am by the time we got home. It was a very long day.
But today… It’s been pouring cats and dogs all day long, and my front sideway is flooded again. I really need to rescue my trash and recycling bins before the wind skids them down the street, but it’s pouring so badly I’d get soaked before I got two feet from my front door! At least it isn’t snow… but the weather is so rainy and gloomy I’ve got half a mind to get back on a plane to San Jose and camp out in Catie’s backyard where it’s sunny!!!
It’ll be a while before I can catch up on blogs. I’m exhausted, and I haven’t even thought about opening my Google Reader. You people are so prolific, I know I have probably 50 blogs to read. The very thought is exhausting! But I’ll catch up soon. Just not today.
But I’m home. And safely. And I’m thankful that I had such a good time this weekend, and that I have such a wonderful group of friends. Everyone was just as wonderful in real life as they were on the internet, and for that I am grateful. Thank you!!!
PS — Happy birthday, Catie!!!