Monday, March 23, 2009

Spring Break, Part I


1) The seafood lunch we had at Bill's Seafood Restaurant in Chincoteague, VA. Amazing clam chowder.

2) I always love an aquarium, so the Virginia Aquarium in Virginia Beach was a LOT of fun. I did not touch the rat they told me to pet, though. I consider touching rodents the kind of thing that happens only accidentally and is forever the kind of story you tell to gross people out. "And this giant rat ran across my foot in Manhattan, and I was wearing flip-flops so it touched me!" not "And it was kind of cute and the handler told us it was okay to pet him..."

3) Kitty Hawk. I love small museums, and I learned a lot. I'd always thought of the Wright brothers as adventurers, outdoorsmen - I never realized how really freakin' smart they had to be to invent the airplane.

4) The Rice Museum in Georgetown, SC. Don't laugh. It's cooler than it sounds. It was really interesting to watch, though, how the museum dealt with slavery. As a "museum person," I'd heard plenty about how difficult it is for institutions that are proud about parts of their history to include the fact that those parts of their history involved slavery, but I'd never seen it done. Maybe because I was thinking about it as an "industry insider," it was very obvious to me. I had to point it out to Rhett, though, and I think that's the danger - it can be subtle and insidious endorsements of the institution of slavery that aren't clear to people who aren't looking for it. Still, very cool museum.

5) Charleston, SC, and the first day we saw the sun.

6) The utterly delicious dinner we had at Vic's on the River in Savannah. I've wanted to try fried green tomatoes ever since I read Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Cafe. I finally tried them here, as an appetizer, and they were incredible.

7) The Nats' Spring Training game in Melbourne, FL. It was fun in its own right, but the best part was watching Rhett, who, eyes shining and bouncing in his seat like a ten-year-old, was more excited than I've ever seen him.

8) A story that Rhett told me about him when he was 6. He'd prefer I stop bringing it up to him and collapsing into uncontrollable laughter, and I'm not allowed to tell other people about it, so I'm pretty sure he wouldn't be okay with my posting it on the internet, but oh. my. goodness. Funniest story I've ever heard.

9) A story we heard on an episode of This American Life we were listening to on the way home. It's way funnier to hear than to read, and probably much funnier for people who know Italian, but it went like this:

Skinny white Jewish kid who only speaks a little Italian is studying abroad in
Florence. Despite now knowing much Italian or anything about football, he agrees
to help coach Italians playing American football. On his first day, he asks them
to show him their drills. They line up, and he hears the leader start yelling
"Die! Jew! Die! Jew!" (Here's where I burst out laughing while Rhett still looks
befuddled) as they start running in place and dropping to the ground. (What's
obvious to anyone who's ever played a sport in Italy is that he's actually
yelling "Dai! Giu! Dai! Giu!" which basically means "Go! Down! Go! Down!")

10) They say a couple's first vacation alone together is a "test." While I didn't really think this would put our relationship to the test, I definitely at least thought we'd get on each other's nerves and argue some. After all, it's not normal for any people to spend every minute of every day together, which we essentially did. We didn't argue at all (except, actually, the night before we left). Instead, we had great talks and lots of fun, didn't fight, and I came out of it more confident than ever in our relationship.

11) We're lost in Orlando, trying to find something fun to do when we're not doing Universal or Disney or any of that stuff that's not in our budget. I'm trying to read a map, I come up with bad directions, we make wrong turns and can't turn around. Rhett is clearly very annoyed. He doesn't speak much and is short when he does. When we finally find a mini-golf place and get out of the car, he turns to me and says, "I'm sorry I lost my temper in there for a little while." I start laughing at him. Lost his temper? No dear, what you did was keep your temper, despite being angry. If that's "losing his temper," I'm a very lucky girl indeed.

12) A St. Patrick's Day party at my cousin's house and then a St. Patrick's Day parade on Sunday when we got back home to NY. Green mimosas, corned beef, devilled eggs, Pipe and Drum bands, local schools, veterans' organizations, etc. Couldn't ask for more.

Stay tuned for a much shorter list of anti-highlights tomorrow!

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