Tuesday, May 24, 2011

ramblin' man

I spent Friday and Saturday nights sleeping on couches: one at the groom’s place (the night before the wedding), the other at my sister’s. When you’re young, getting the couch is often like winning the lottery – usually, you and your friends are battling over one couch on offer and the rest of the apartment floor. Of course, it was only me involved so no winning ticket was require, but, in case you weren’t aware, couch sleeping isn’t quite as comfy when you’re older.

The entire wedding shindig was top drawer. From rehearsal to reception everything was beautifully planned and managed. As I told my friends, I’ll go a 1,000 miles for a couple of free dinners and four hours of open bar over two nights. Aside from the formal ceremony, the rehearsal dinner stood out as a chance to meet friends and family while enjoying a fantastic meal at Rainbow on Nicollet. For the first time in nearly 20 years, we all had a chance to spend time with each and see how our lives have changed.

About a dozen attendees ended up at the show on Friday night – including the bride/groom – which ended up being another great social event. I’m only guessing, but I suspect that both were ready for some mindless activity that didn’t involve checklists, planning, and worrying. I was pleased to see them get a chance to decompress before the big day. They managed a respectable bedtime while I ended up eating White Castle (not my plan or execution) and gabbing until 4:30am. Fortunately, by 9am everyone was up and about, and in good spirits, for a round of corn pancakes at (my) legendary Maria’s Café. A corn pancake with a few eggs over easy and a dash of cotija cheese can bring anyone back from the depths of the underslept.

After a bit of the reception on Saturday night, I bid farewell and headed over to Anne’s place for the evening and Sunday AM brunch/fast. We caught up over some wine and then hit the bed (or couch). By mid-morning we joined Anne’s comrades for at Whitey’s in NE Minneapolis before I hit the train for the airport.

How was transit, you ask? I did take light rail to and from the airport and the Hiawatha line is really nice: great trains, timely schedule, and the fare – for rush hour times – is a flat $2.25. On the way in I rode up to the Franklin St. station and caught the #2 bus west to the Van Dusen Mansion for the rehearsal. The MTA bus system is adequate, but not great. I never feel like you should have 30-minute bus waits, in the heart of a city, on a weekday. Even with that, the routes are strong and the cost (bus-wise) is about what we pay here in D.C. Anne was going to take me to the airport after breakfast on Sunday until I realized that dropping me off at Target Field (about three blocks from where we were) for the light rail was a much better option: 25 minutes later and I’m checking in at the airport. I’d love to see them expand service from downtown to the western suburbs, but I suspect that’s a pipe dream. (They are building a line between MSP and StP, and I see there’s talk of building a line SW to Eden Prairie.)

The flight back was fine – Delta, and all – and I feel like I’m nearly caught up on sleep; only to ready the entire clan for another wedding up in Vermont this weekend.

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