Saturday, March 12, 2011

Gone County

In my day to day life I sometimes forget the difference between city and country. I moved around several times during my childhood, but always lived in a residential urban area. From 6th grade through high school I lived in the suburbs of Chicago. You don't get too much further from country than that. It isn't until I visit a city that I realize how country I've become. I have forgotten what traffic is, and what it's like to have to wait at more than one stop light before getting to a destination. I forget about the noise. I'm used to the only thing I hear all night is our guardian dog, Spot, barking. Then I get to a city and it all comes back to me. I am reminded why I chose to raise my kids in the country. I know there are pros and cons to both places, and we need people in all areas. But for me and mine, we are quite at home in the country.

I also often forget to write in this blog about the other part of alpaca shows. I always tell our show story, what happens at the show. But I often forget that for this country girl, this is a big trip. While we are very busy at the show, we also enjoy going out to eat, and treating the trip like a vacation. Usually it is a trip without our kids. While I love my kids dearly, a weekend away every so often is nice too. And I know some of my readers are also like me, in that we don't get to a big city often. So to help you live vicariously, I thought I add a bit about our evenings out.

Friday night we were very hungry, very tired, and wanted to eat something filling but not wait too long. I ended up at a local place call the Pig Iron BBQ. I couldn't find a website for them specifically (I found some reviews and such but no straight forward website with the menu etc.). But I did find a picture of the place:

Sorry the picture is so small. And yes, that is a big pink pig out front. How can you go wrong with a pig like that? The place was awesome!! Incredible food, great BBQ, one sweet flavor and one very spicy. I thought I'd have heart burn all night and wouldn't mind one bit because the food was so good. As it turned out, after I doubled up my heartburn medication, I was able to sleep all night.

Then tonight we decided to treat ourselves with a nice dinner out. It's not too often we have a chance to go out, without kids, and have a nice meal. We went to J. Gilbert's a very nice steak and seafood restaurant. It was a completely different type of restaurant than we were at Friday night, but wonderful just the same.

By Sunday we will be busy with the show and the long drive home, so no more fancy eating out. It was a great food weekend, and people who know me know I love food. I'm glad I keep busy with farm work and running or I wouldn't be able to eat like I do.

We also had a chance to sit in the hot tub and rest our aching joints. We usually enjoy relaxing in a hot tub after a long day at a show. It's the best medicine.

I've gone to rating hotels by this scale:

* I'd never go to again
* I'd stay there again
* I'd love the spend a week there
* hey, I might just stay here forever

This hotel was a "I'd stay here again". It's nice and clean, located not to far from the venue. My complaint would be that it's busy and a bit louder than I prefer (but that might be the city talking).

This country girl isn't quite ready to return home yet. We still have another day to show. And, we have three more spring shows to attend. I'll try to remember to tell this other side of our show trip adventures.

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