Jen and Brian @ ATL

We flew this weekend to Atlanta to attend Jen and Brian’s wedding. Jen is Sarah’s friend from Camp Seafarer (New Bern, NC) and we have kept in touch all these years. Her mom and stepdad are great people — we have stayed with them — and we got to talk with her dad, Jeff, this time, and his mother, and found them to be lovely.

We flew Midwest from MKE to ATL, arrived Friday night, and after a $50 (flat rate with tip) cab ride, ended up at the InterContinental Buckhead. Nice place. Buckhead is the new tony area of Atlanta ala Cherry Creek in Denver (site of Robbie and Emily’s wedding last year). Across the street was a new condo “Residences from $1 to $11 million”. Ulp. 2 years old, new, lots of bellmen running about. We checked in, stopped at the conciege to enquire about a restaurant Robin had suggested, Seasons 52. They called and got us a 9:15 (ET) reservation — I guess that was pretty good.

Note to self: if I ever have a cold again, never fly. Landing is painful, and our heads did not clear until we had to go home. As I write this, my right ear is still not clear.

It rained like heck after we arrived, lightning, etc., so we took a cab (at the Buckhead flat rate of $8!!!) to Seasons. I like to try new local places, but it turns out this was a chain. Oh well. We started with a Artichoke flatbread, kind of a thin Indian naan with artichoke and cheese. Good stuff — that and a salad would have been a good meal. I started with a tabbouleh salad, Bette had Tomata Stack salad. I had a nice pepper-spiced filet, with a Ravenswood Cab or two. Bette had Pan-Seared Snapper and a Brampton Sauvignon Blanc.

How to get home? The manager at the podium was great. He confided they had problems getting cabs to show up in good weather, and with the rain, it might be a problem. He suggested calling the hotel, which we did, and they sent over a great guy in a new Cadillac with the hotel logo to pick us up. He is a hospitality lifer, soon on his way to Vegas to stay. Nice guy. So he got the $10 instead of the cab company.

We go another wine pair in the XO bar at the hotel — for $25 plus tip. Yow! We sat in the lobby and the parents walked in with the wedding party from the rehearsal dinner. We chatted for an hour or so, hugged Jen and met Brian, and later turned in.

Arise whenever, and headed down to the Trippe room for the hospitality suite continental breakfast. Bagels, cream cheese, lots of nice fruit. Mmm. Good coffee.

It was raining still so we hung out for a while. The rain eventually stopped, and we walked down Peachtree to find Men’s Wearhouse and some cold meds. We kept walking, found Seasons 52 and asked a nice young woman (reminding me of a Wrigleyville or Evanston type) for a drugstore. She came up with Whole Foods, two blocks over. Got some herbal meds, and some fruit, and Peelu gum to try out. I keep looking for a non-aspartame gum, but they either stick to my teeth or lose flavor in seconds. Peelu did both. Another, called XXXX, tasted better, and did not stick, but still died quickly.

We walked back, noticed a funky looking Cajun place buried in a strip mall called McKinnons The concierge seemed to know it. I wished I would have known the day before. Anyway, picked up the tux shirt and bow tie, no problem. Back to hotel to nap.

At 1PM we woke up. Bette said, “Let’s go to Centennial Park”. This was one tourist thing that Robin had recommended. We checked out the concierge, she said either a cab or MARTA train. We wimped out on public transportation this trip, folks. When on a schedule, it’s worth the cash to not get lost.

We wandered about the park, watched the choreographed fountains filled with kids, and wondered why anyone would pay $15 to see the Coca-Cola Museum. The park was very nice, but not spectacular. We had a hot dog and turkey salad sandwich for lunch and some water.

We returned, and Bette started getting ready, I walked around a bit, sat on the deck reading and watching wedding pictures.

While eating a Mentos from the guest gift bag, I felt something crunch. Aggregate in the candy? Lawsuit? No, just a piece of tooth broken off. Crap.

The wedding was great. We sat with the neighbors, and Sarah knew most of them, so we had a nice evening of connecting and dancing. Everyone we met was great.

We took a drink from the reception to enjoy by the pool, but the pool door locked at 9PM. We went up to the room and looked out the window at the lights. Very nice. Packed up what we could, then slept.

We should have stayed at the reception. Jen had prepared a surprise for her new hubby and at 11:45P or so, Chick-Fil-A Chicken Biscuits rolled in for everyone. Brian does not suffer junk food easily, so this was Jen saying, “Lighten up.”

Books read:
M for Malice by Sue Grafton. Looked like a long series, and I had never read any, so for $10 hardback at the Sanibel bookstore, I bit. Fun whodunit. Fast reading, good characters. I’d do another. (ISBN: 0-8050-3637-7)
The Road by Cormac McCarthy. Dark, haunting. Good read. But I was always wondering how the world ended up burned, always looking for more detail, and for some reason, that distracted me from the story. Glad I bought the hardback for only $10 in Sanibel. (ISBN: 0-307-26543-9)

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