Friday, April 12, 2013

Easter & Cherry Blossom Tournament: The Last Hurrah

So in fear that I'm getting too old for childhood pleasantries like trick-or-treating I wasn't sure I'd have an Easter basket sent to me at school despite the past few years surprise in the mail. I called my Mom a week before I left for spring break to remind her I would love to receive some goodies. To be honest asking for an Easter basket isn't the same as getting a surprise when you walk downstairs or walk to your PO BOX in Moseley to find a packing slip you know is not anything you ordered online. None the less I was grateful she sent me a little somethin' somthin'.

About a year ago this June Mom bought me one of my favorite films, The Easter Parade, on dvd. If you are not familiar with this fabulously entertaining and musically thrilling piece of art I will encourage you to rent the film with a spoiler - the best of the best actors of the our time play the leads: Fred Astaire and Judy Garland. As the holiday weekend approached I knew that I would like - as I have for the past three years while at college - to see the movie. Its a tradition my Mom and I started when I was younger  so I feel a personal connection, a memory of the 'good ole days'. Once the dvd was in my possession I kept it in the top drawer of our entertainment cabinet back home in New Jersey. Sad day :(

These days I've been quite nostalgic reflecting about my days in our nation's capital this last spring. I remember it was the centennial of the Cherry Blossom festival and my mom visited me a few weeks after the blossoms bloomed. It was a super quick spotting of the blossoms lasting about three days if that and the rest of the season the trees remained flowerless. This year, however, the warmer temperatures are gradual and not as shocking as the year before. Also different from last spring was that I went to the Cherry Blossom Tournament as a player not just a stand-by member of Elon Women's Rugby.

Huge breakfast spread

This time around was the best yet and its appropriate the last one would leave me feeling accomplished. Although we did not officially win any titles we played hard. It was extremely exciting to play in front of my Mom and other family members of other players. We had so much support from the sidelines which felt really nice. The Simesons per usual are a delight. They are saints in my book opening their house for the past three years to a bunch of ruggers who eat a ton, sleep sloppily and make a lot of noise when together. At least we are not partial to breaking things like when boys get in packs. Breakfast casseroles, yummy snack foods, homemade lasagna...I haven't ate that good in awhile other than the usual dishes I cook for myself. It was especially sweet to have Dennis around because my mom and I were treated to lunch the first day of the tournament. We went to Outback and got the Bloomin' Onion as an appetitizer. YUM!!!!! I have not had one in over five years. It tasted sooooooooo good and it made me feel less guilty eating a 1500 calorie dish among two other people.

I should also mention a great trip up on the Megabus to D.C. from Durham. Never done that before but it seemed to go smoothly with the exception of cramped leg room and the fact I had to leave my apartment around 9am to take the train to the bus depot. No biggie because it was worth meeting up with Kristi, Dennis and Mom for dinner at the hipest italian restaurant in non other than D.C.'s Chinatown, Vapiano's. It was buzzing that night like I'd never seen it and I was so happy Kristi and I's pregame appetitizer and round of drinks around the corner at Bar Louie made us late. Mom and Dennis caught the best spot in the place. After a much satisfied meal we walked it off around the national mall around late dusk. We walked from the Dept of Justice to the Pearl Harbor memorial and turned back going north back to Chinatown. I had to admit how much I do miss life in D.C.

The ride back was an adventure to say the least. While at a rest stop for lunch and bathroom break we locked ourselves out of the van. Yep. That would only happen to van riders. Lucky for us one of our rookies, Lexie, was our savior. AAA Plus member had her card on her, called for service and within the hour a guy appeared and helped us unlock the driver door. In the meantime we were fortunate enough to be surrounded by a plethora of shops. We made rounds to the pet store and Michael's before the towe truck arrive with help.

 Our Savior arrives!!!

Near ready to get out of the van after one hell of a trip Steph plays around 
with the plush dog Natty got from Blaine as a V-Day gift last yr. It talks, dances and sings...well not really but Steph seems to think so :)

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