Writing before reading -- as enforced by apparent unavailability of LJ.
This is day three of road trip two of summer vacation. Atlanta: with Mom and Dad, here for an International Gideon's Convention.
I don't consider this a particularly gas-extravagant summer. For our trip to Branson, we drove my Beetle, which doesn't exactly get hybrid mileage, but does 28-30 on the highway.
For our present trip, to Atlanta, we drove Critter's car. And it's been sitting in the parking garage since we arrived - everything we want to do is within walking distance of MARTA.
We got a bit of a late start on Monday. The plan was to leave at noon, but my pants were in a load still drying then; we got out by around 1:30, but made an early return for sunglasses and goggles and more glasses cleaning fluid. We finally hit the road by 2:15pm, after stopping for Krispy Kremes and Rally's on our way out of town.
Critter drove the entire way. We stopped for gas just before we hit Tennessee -- a longish construction delay made it prudent not to wait longer. We stopped again for dinner, just outside Chatanooga. I was in the mood for Chinese, and Googlemaps showed 3 places close to our route. Tigger picked China Moon. Imagine our surprise, when we found a VW Club meeting in the back room of the restaurant that evening. A gentleman driving a 70's minibus arrived just around the time that we did, and invited us to join them.
The food was delicious and the variety was quite good. They even had a pretty big sushi bar at the front of the restaurant.
Critter declared himself still fresh to drive, so he drove the rest of the way to the Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta. We're staying in a double/double with Mom and Dad. It's an extremely nice room, although we crowd it just a tad. The beds are the kind with high-thread count linens, featherbeds above and below the sheets, and chenille throws. They've even given us an extra featherbed for Tigger to use. He's sleeping in the two chairs, pushed together.
The internet is fee-per-day, but the speed is good, so I've been taking good advantage for downloads. :)
Tuesday, I slept solidly almost past noon, even though both the boys were up by 8:30. Mom and Dad had left the room before 7 for their conference stuff. They are each working in an area like registration or whatnot for the conference. Since I was sleepy, the boys went to the food court on the their own for breakfast, bringing their laptops with them. Their were going to bring back food for me, but forget to bring more just a Diet Dr. Pepper. On the other hand, they got back while I was still sleepy
They left again for more exploring, including the top of the hotel (47th floor), and met Mom and Dad at the food court for lunch. By then, I was awake, and they brought back a wrap for me to drink with the DDP from earlier.
After Daddy took a nap, he and Critter and I set out to find him better walking shoes. His current loafers were falling apart. We went south one station to Five Points, which has a Payless Shoes right outside the station. We had just enough time to pick out shoes for Daddy, then get him back to the hotel complex for his next meeting.
Mom and Dad invited us to join them for dinner last night, while they were hosting two men from Uruguay. Tigger bowed out, preferring to stay in the room. Daddy was hoping to use Critter's Spanish language education to help translate, but I got to help a bit too -- since Uruguay is nestled just south of Brazil, they understood some Portuguese. It was a fun challenge in communication. One of the men spoke a little bit of English, and his daughter had made friends with a girl there from Mexico, who spoke excellent English. Also at our table, were a couple from Canada that were hosting a couple from Bermuda. I collected various business cards to bring back for Flar - you never know where he'll make an important business connection these days. :)
Daddy went off to a meeting after dinner, but Mommy played hooky and came back to the room with us. We got to chill out a bit together then settled down ready for the night. We watched the American Duos episode of Psych before we went to sleep.
This morning, the boys and I were planning to eat breakfast at Waffle House. Googlemaps claimed that there is one across from the Capitol building, but we couldn't find it once we got down there via MARTA. A very nice policeman stopped and gave us directions, and we decided to eat at the food court in the Underground. Critter and I ate from Le Petit Bristro, and Tigger ate from there, a pizza place AND the Chinese restaurant, with a cone for dessert from the DQ! All of the food was fresh and yummy, but maybe it just tastes better after a bit more walking than usual.
We browsed a bit in the Underground, bought some 3-D wooden puzzles, then stopped at the Payless in Five Points to get shoes for Critter and for me. I did not bring shoes up to the level of walking we've been doing. We had talked about going to the aquarium next, but I was ready for a bit more rest, so we've agreed to put that off until Sunday.
Critter is currently at the airport, seeing if he can get his boarding passes. He went on a dry run to see how long he should plan to for the trip tomorrow; it took 25 minutes. Since he's traveling to Pasadena with only a backpack, MARTA makes more sense than driving him. It also adds to his feeling of independence for this trip. He's excited about going off on his own for a college visit.
Tigger's playing a video game on his laptop (one with very pleasant background music, I must say) while I surf. When I run out of online reading, I've got some paperwork I can do, and No Stones homework.
Critter is planning to go to the Apple Store before he heads back to the hotel; Mom and Dad look to be busy through dinner tonight.
Added now: Mom and Dad invited me to dinner again tonight. They were hosting a married couple from Nigeria. They spoke perfect English, but were more reserved, so there was actually a bit less conversation. I got a call from the vet during dessert, so I ducked out to talk to him. That will be another post altogether.
After dinner, I hung out with Mom, and we were joined by Critter. I got to play with Mom's iPhone, finally. IT's a very fun and pretty interface, but I do have difficulty aiming past my long nails... We didn't sit through the entire evening program, but I did get to listen to Rev. Henry Blackaby speak about Why Revival Tarries. Summing up a lot, the church needs to get back to what Christ taught, if we expect to be able to go do works for Him. Mom and Dad stayed for the Ice Cream Social, but Critter and I came on back to the room. We called Flar to talk about Ouchie, and then got online. Mom and Dad are back now, so I'm sure lights out will be soon to follow.
It's a sort of busy, but restful balance of vacation, so far.