Our first autumn weekend of 2016… sigh. I am always sad when summer is over. Friday evening Travalon and I joined Catzookz, Rich, and a bunch of people we didn’t know for Twins Fan’s birthday party at Mr. Brews. Travalon gave Twins Fan replica tickets to the World Series in 1990 (?) when the Twins played, and Charlie’s Angels stickers, only they didn’t have Farrah Fawcett ones. It didn’t matter, Twins Fan thought they were great. They came from an antiques store in Oconomowoc.
Saturday Travalon and I met Rich and the Rosary Ladies (except OK Cap, who was out of town for a cranberry festival) at the usual place for coffee, then Travalon watched the Badger game at a bar on State Street while we ladies prayed a rosary in a beautiful garden near our church called the Period Garden. It is a city park, and I had no idea it existed, but Luxuli took us there. I have never seen orange trumpet flowers before! It has all kinds of flowers still blooming this late in the year, and a fountain in the center. Then Travalon and I drove to New Glarus and went to their Oktoberfest, where of course we had New Glarus Oktoberfest beer, as well as a giant pretzel and a roesti on a stick, which is sort of like a hash brown popsicle. We went to Mass in Belleville, which was celebrated by our former parish priest, and he remembered me. On the way back to town we stopped in Paoli at the Hop Garden and sat outside enjoying a drink, then we went to the Monona Terrace, but the little café on the roof had just shut for the evening, so we went to the nearby bar in the Hilton Hotel. They no longer have a wonderful drink called 40 but Hot that Jilly Moose and I enjoyed one evening, something like hot chocolate with Cointreau in it, but the bartender made us chocolate martinis. We discovered they serve food there too, and we had a delicious dish with chicken confit, gnocchi, and asparagus. One of the bartenders told us he saw someone do a “Statue of Liberty” shot by dipping their thumb into a shot of green chartreuse, lighting it on fire, and drinking the shot before putting out the flames. Not sure I’ll be trying that myself anytime soon, though as regular readers of this blog know, I am one of the few people who actually likes the taste of green chartreuse.
Yesterday I went to a baby shower, and I was caught off-guard both by the fact that no lunch was served despite the hour (just little snacky things like meatballs and deviled eggs), and by the number of gifts everyone else brought the honoree. I only gave her one gift and then felt really chintzy. Am I completely out of touch with how much a person is expected to spend on a baby shower gift? We did watch part of the Packer game at the shower, and then I headed home for the second half. The offense was amazing during the first half, but then they couldn’t get anything going during the second half, while the defense seemed to lose the ability to stop the Lions, so suddenly the game went from a blowout to a narrow victory. Travalon had gone to Oconomowoc for a family birthday party, so when he returned, we went to the little bar on Crystal Lake for “lupper” (since it was early for supper but late for lunch), then we went to Sauk City and investigated the flooding there. The Wisconsin River has gone over its banks, which doesn’t affect the town, since it is on higher ground, but I’m afraid some of the trees will not survive having their roots submerged. The birds loved it – we saw ducks, geese, gulls, and two beautiful white egrets exploring the new expanse of water. Then we went to Rich’s house for a birthday party for Antoshka, who had made chicken that he marinated in a mixture of mustard and mayonnaise. It was … interesting, but I was still full from “lupper” so I only had a small piece to try it. Rich made brownies instead of a birthday cake, and Mr. N’Awlins made a fruit salad for dessert. I did have some of both of those and then had to run in front of the TV after we got home to burn off those calories. Hopefully our new downstairs neighbor (the rumor is that we have one) doesn’t mind!