Holiday on Ice


Holiday on Ice

Not quite ice but it sure was bleak, that pre-spring stillness in Ohio while I visited there for two weeks. It was 17 degrees at night, and this spoiled traveler wore a turtleneck, sweatpants, a fleece jacket, a fleece bathrobe and a fleece blanket in an attempt to survive what my family has graciously endured for months.

For the first part of the trip I accompanied my husband on a business trip to Baltimore. We are within spitting distance of Medicare but finally experiencing things we never had the opportunity to do before. I have never been able to join him like this. I loved exploring Baltimore's Inner Harbor every day, heading out with my guide books and Sketchers every morning while he went to his meetings. I walked neighborhoods looking for old architecture and learning the nuances of city crosswalks. I spent a day at the Aquarium, enjoying the plant life as well as the fish, and awed by the scratch marks made by the sharks on the glass tank walls. I took an elevator ride to the 27th floor of a building honoring the 9-11 tragedy, where you can see the Baltimore skyline and admire the integration of the old and new neighborhoods. McCormick's Seasonings and Phillip's Seafood have flagship presences there. When I tired from all this fun, I went back to the hotel and sunk down in the hot tub and read a book. Sigh.

When we got back to Youngstown, we enjoyed the event which was the pivot point of my trip. My husband and I watch America's Got Talent, such a guilty pleasure. We think it's hilarious, and four years ago the winner was Landau Eugene Murphy Jr., a skinny black fellow with dreadlocks who sang Frank Sinatra ballads. He won my heart from the first time I saw him, and I had been following his career since, buying his CD, and wondering why he didn't record more. I had discovered he was coming to Youngstown to perform and scheduled my trip home to coincide with that performance. I was concerned he might have had his uniqueness polished off, his crazy teeth capped, his hair coiffed, his voice trained. But he did not disappoint! He was still marvelously himself, unique, a gracious and true showman who delighted in performing. He was participating in a scholarship fundraiser, paying forward with his pure voice and delightful talent. He came down into the audience and shook everyone's hand.

My husband has embarked on renovating our house with his mad redecorating skills. Now that our daughters are gone and their weddings paid for, we are ditching the milk crates of our youth and embracing IKEA. I marvel at how we ever arrived at this point, with a beautiful, coordinated, intentional living space. I am so proud of him.

No trip north is ever complete without time spent with my youngest daughter. Admiring her new spinning wheel, I continued to be amazed at her expertise and depth of self-taught knowledge. We share a love of cooking and exploring food styles, so we caught up on our lives while lingering over Mexican beans and rice, steak, lobster tail, chicken and rice casserole, vegetarian delicacies, pizza.

Icing on the cake for this trip included a dentist check-up resulting in no cavities (sorry, Doc, no new yacht this summer!)  and a tax refund after visiting H&R Block.

This is my intentionally happy post, and I will conclude it with sweet memories and comforting reminders that life is going on exceedingly well without me. And I've heard rumors Spring has since flaunted her lacy underpants! Hurray!


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Happy posts work for me. Thanks for sharing.


I LOVE the photo!! I love that we get to \"meet\" your husband.\r\n\r\nYour spring break sounds just lovely. Maybe you didn't enjoy spring blooms but the spring in your step probably felt just as revitalizing.