Jun 262024
 

(8:07am) Good morning party people, we’re currently en route to Allentown, PA to spend a few hours at Dorney Park. They have a new dive coaster and we need that cred. It takes a bit over 4 hours to get there so I really had to plead my case to Henry on this one haha.

We were just listening to one of the writers of St. Elmo’s Fire talking on WDVE in the wake of the Brat Pack doc and now I am desperate to watch that movie again – one of my faves when I was a teen!! Henry just admitted that he doesn’t think he ever watched the whole thing, oh my godddddd. Guess that’s what we will be doing this weekend.

(8:36am) Since my last check-in, we grabbed morning sustenance at Dunkin, Henry went the wrong way and denied it, then almost went through a redlight RIGHT IN FRONT OF COP and acted like it was NBD even though he did a HARD STOP that threw me forward and if it had me driving, Henry would have lambasted me and revoked my license because I’m a WOMAN.

(10:28am) Just stopped at a restaurant area in Sideling Hill whatever that means and Henry is being so annoying and also breathing heavy.

(11:51am) Welcome back to The Rest Stop Report. Just stopped at one outside of Harrisburg. Bathroom was clean. Came out to some weird hullabaloo at the vending machines where Henry was standing with a fistful of dollars like he was in the pit at a strip club, while Chooch was like GET ME THIS GET ME THAT. The vending machine had TUNA AND CRACKERS. I wanted Henry to get it for an experiment (a Will This Kill a Man experiment, specifically) but he ended up getting nothing so I don’t know what all that singing and dancing was for.

Apparently a package of Veggie Sticks was half sticking out and Chooch wanted Henry to shake the machine to see if he could knock it loose but Henry’s excuse was that “someone was working there” – bitch where? We saw no such employee. This was just his excuse to not have to be exposed for WEAKNESS.

(1:06pm) we made it!

(1:27pm) Iron Menace, the new one, down for maintenance ugh!

So we came to Steel Force and had to wait for them to clean a seat that someone puked in!

Also Chooch was a bitch about this picture. God forbid I’m trying to collect MEMS of our last summer together before he sets collegiate sail ugh.

(2:36pm) Hello from a table after eating cheese flatbread and witnessing Henry having a shit fit because he ate more than his share of a fried tasty kake krinkle (??) and we called him out on it. My least favorite thing about him is when he gets all high and mighty and gaslighty, wherein he acts like he’s this PERFECT MAN who never does anything wrong.

“You have a Saint complex!” I cried. “And I’ll tell you exactly who gave it to you – your mother!”

It’s true. He can do no wrong in her eyes and she makes sure everyone knows it. If only she knew the Henry we know!!

Anyway, Iron Menace was chefs kiss! Chooch’s 351st credit!

Also, it’s this babe’s 100th bday and she is riding gloriously like a young lady!

Still pouting lol.

(2:45pm) LOL HE WONT EVEN SIT NEAR US ON THE TRAIN.

(3:09pm) FORGOT HOW TERRIFYING THIS IS.

(3:28pm) Slowest log flume ops.

(5:32pm) We just pulled out of Dorney so I will do little recaps here and there on the 4.5 hour drive home (ugh) but wow what a nice day except for when Henry threw his little bitch fest earlier over lunch. He’s sort of ok now.

Look at this cute shirt I bought!!!! I was going to get a Steel Force shirt but then I saw this and had to snatch it because CLOWN LOVE.

(5:44pm) At Trivet Diner whatever that means. Our server is very nice so far and is sorry that they don’t have almond milk for the cold brew that I am about to regret ordering.

Also our server likes my sunglasses and the cold brew is good so this is going well :)

Better than listening to Chooch recount all the times I acted like a baby in Stockholm. Ugh. When I pointed out that it was because he ruined my life because I wanted to go to the Vasa museum but we went to the Viking museum instead, he put on this really slow, drawl of condescension and said, “And we could have gone there too. You looked in and suddenly you said we couldn’t go because you wanted to eat instead, so then we had to go and eat. Remember.”

Um wait. Hahah hold up now hunny. What now?!

(6:26pm) one of the servers called over another server when I was paying because she wanted her (Crystal apparently) to see my phone case and Chooch mumbled “wow are you happy now, it’s all you ever wanted.”

We just left and I’m lamenting that I didn’t leave a big enough tip (more than 25%) and Henry and Chooch yelled in tandem, “it was plenty!” I’m sorry but NORA was NICE.

(6:42pm) At Sheetz and the power went out! A bad storm is on the horizon and I’m lowkey terrified because we’re going to be driving into it. :/

Here are some dreamy pictures from Dorney <3 the only slight downside was the ops on talon. Literal station wait yet it took us so long to get on and sent that Henry looked like he forgot who we were when we rejoined him. Also on the way there, a guy running one of the games kept yelling “Win your mom a prize! Hey, win your mom a prize! Where are you going?! Your mom wants a prize!” And then to the two boys behind us, “Hey win that kid’s mom a prize.” Lol.

Ok thoughts – loved it in the back/middle. Did NOT love it second row/last seat on right. I felt like a rag doll in a bad way. But overall what a great addition. I love the industrial makeover that whole section of the park got.

Steel Force Club Forever!! Chooch ride it two back-to-back times before we left. The second time, there was barely anyone waiting in the station so we just jumped up a few rows. The guy who got in behind us was like “Ooh you guys skipped the line! I saw what you did! Don’t worry I won’t tell” and then to Chooch he said “Your mom cracked the code!” But it was totally Chooch who chose to do this after seeing another girl do it on the first ride we were on that round. I remember the last time we were there in 2019, it was similar low crowds and we asked if we could stay on and the line attendant was like NO U HAVE TO GET BACK IN LINE and it was RIDIC because they were sending trains with like four people in them.

Anyway. Steel Force is so good. After we ride it the first time today, we did go all the way around and got back in line, only to get on a train and then have the ride attendants yell EVERYONE OUT because someone puked. The ride op in his little hut yelled AGAIN?? into his microphone because it had legit JUST happened before we rode the first time and we had to wait for them to clean it and send it empty. But yeah, happened again less than 10 minutes later! This time they had to wait for more cleaning supplies so they asked everyone to leave the line.

The real question: WAS IT THE SAME PERSON.

There was a ride attendant named OMAR on Talon and he was nice but slow AF and everyone was like OMAR! when our train was on the brake run while the slow-ass ops were preparing to send the train in the station. Omar seemed like he liked the attention but I don’t think the kids calling for him had good intentions.

Chooch hating life.

Telling me I can have some of his dippin dots if I could find a spoon on the ground because he’d rather a dirty floor-spoon go into his dippin dots than one that had already previously been in my mouth how sweet.

I love the color palette of the enterprise!!! Also I miss the enterprise at Kennywood and hate the replacement they put in.

Somehow we missed the kiddie cred in 2019. This was one of the most jerky/janky kids coasters I’ve ever ridden. I hated it lol.

There was almost someone who puked on the Tilt a Whirl too and that someone was me lol. Whoooo this was a doozy on a hot-ass day. Look at creepster Henry on the wall.

(8:42pm) Ugh Henry is making me drive. BRB.

(10:10pm) UGHHHHH at a rest stop finally – it was / is raining so hard with lighting everywhere and I was silently screaming as I white-knuckled the steering wheel, trying not to hydroplane on the fucking turnpike, while Henry relaxed in the passenger seat. I hate him. Now he’s inside the rest stop probably treating himself to some snacks from 7-eleven fucking asshole.

Also I wish our 7-elevens were like Asian ones and were actually fun to stop at.

I’m publishing this now because my muscles hurt from being clenched for the last hour and I want to do some calming breathing exercises or something (sometimes I miss my smoking years because this would be one of those CALLS FOR A CAMEL moments of yesteryear) but maybe I’ll stop back with one or two more updates, who knows.

(11:19pm) just checking in to say we passed through the Squirrel Hill tunnel and I want everyone to know that Henry got to drive the last leg home in perfectly dry weather MUST BE NICE.

Apr 202024
 

6:30am: at some dumb Sleep Inn in Harrisburg, getting ready to continue on to Philly for admitted students day at Drexel. Chooch just told us that he forgot to pack socks and underwear. College-ready, you guys.

Mom to a soon-to-be-18-yo and (maybe, debatable) college student.

The stress I have been under over this, whoooooooooweeeeeeeee.

We’re staying down the road from Capitol Diner and Henry has pointed out 6x that we have eaten there before and I was like OK! We get it! God! Move on! But then as we left the hotel this morning he pointed it out again and I snapped and had to consult my blog because he sent me down a rabbit hole of misinformation about when we had eaten there. Anyway, it was in 2010 when we went to Lancaster with Tommy and Jessy and ditched them on the way home and ate there without them lol. It was when I was heavy into my Weener Phase:

I remember posting my Henry Weener art on Facebook and getting reported by someone, probably Henry.

7:31am: Just stopped at a rest area in Bowmansville for Dunkin in case you were wondering and now Henry is muttering about how they’re always out of something. It was just what he and chooch wanted so it didn’t affect me.

I wish US Dunkin would get the injeolmi lattes!! Someone find out how to make me one and then make it for me. I’ll wait. Almond, soy, or oat is fine! I’m not picky with non-dairy milks.

8:39am: I mean I like that it’s a dragon.

9:00am: When I told Nate I wasn’t sure if this was a fly-by-night college or what, he said “founded in 1891 by Anthony J. Drexel, a financier and philanthropist

“I don’t think it’s fly-by-night, Erin.”

I saw him!

Tony!

9:08am: Standing here waiting to register and some student ambassador came over and asked Chooch what events he’s looking forward to attending and he was like “…mm I’m just really looking forward to seeing the campus in general” and she was like, “blah blah dorm tours blah recommend.”

And then something about a free shirt which sounds cool.

“I was afraid that was going to happen,” Chooch said when she walked away. “I literally just went to the website yesterday” and then did his signature maniacal giggle.

This is going well.

9:20am:

We were the first ones to register and the first ones to make it to wherever we are now and every ambassador very cheerfully greeted us and pointed out that we were first which fed my ego and made me feel like I was about to get in line for FIRST ROW OF FIRST RIDE OF THE DAY on Steel Vengeance or something.

Shit we’re getting giddy now. Thirty more minutes until this starts.

9:33am: all of a sudden Dua Lipa’s Levitating came on FULL BLAST like way louder than all the songs before it bc they know her super fan Erin R. Kelly is here. Chooch is annoyed. I feel like I’m on the plane to Korea again because I listened to a Delta-sanctioned Dua Lipa playlist on repeat for approx. 6 hours by accident and Chooch was disgusted.

10:48am OK that presentation is over (um I cried IMMEDIATELY when it started) and now we’ve been ushered off to the College of Computing & Informatics for that presentation. I have to pee really bad and am also nervous about Chooch becoming a Flyers fans. I don’t care about the other sports teams. But NO FLYERS OR NO CHRISTMAS, SONNY BOY.

11:31am: the girl in front of me (sister of admitted student I guess) is watching a Chinese drama on her phone and I’m trying to watch too because I tried to pay attention to this presentation but I’m bored.

12:39pm: finally back outside. I broke the paper towel dispenser in one of the bathrooms. Some girl said “just leave it” which is why I’m able to update with a picture of these beautiful trees and not my view from the underneath of the paper towel dispenser as I’m trying to fix it with the bubblegum I’m not chewing.

1:20pm: at the dining hall eating a salad and vegan chicken tenders.

Also we did a dorm tour if you could call it that and Chooch got some interior design inspo.

1:34pm Henry just came back to the table with an ice coffee which he STIRRED WITH HIS FINGER and then STUCK HIS FINGER IN HIS MOUTH and when he removed his finger, coffee droplets flung onto his shirt and I cried U R SO EMBARRASSING and then Chooch started laughing so hard that he spit his drink out all over the table.

Also here is Chooch asking a fake question about college nutrition in order to get free stuff SPECIFICALLY a squeezable fruit stress ball but he picked the wrong thing and grabbed a heart by accident lol.

Lol he just went up and took a grape and is very smug now.

1:52pm:

2:01pm: Just visited the study abroad table lololol

3:56pm Done with Drexel finally and walking to a cafe. Look how green! No filter!

Now we’re at Black Turtle Coffee, coffee finally.

Back to Drexel stuff, we took a really awkward campus tour with a freshman named Sam from Ghana. He was very nice but we had NO questions. Chooch was going to ask, “When was that tree planted?” just to have something to ask. We did make friends with the mom of the other kid on the tour with us. They’re from Connecticut and he has also not committed.

This was in the science building and it is allegedly the tallest whatever-this-is in North America.

And this is modeled after DNA!

We were going to go here but it reminded me of the place in Stockholm where we were charged $25 for two lattes that some old man basically made out of his house. Scammed.

Also we’re sitting in the basement of this cafe and it’s giving “hiding from the Red Coats.”

Henry: the fuck are you talking about.

Me: look at that corner over there!! That doesn’t remind you of like, the Revolutionary War?

He said something dumb about thinking back to when he lived through that war.

This was the best picture I could get on the fly bc there were people all around. Ugh people.

Decent place I guess! It’s no Seoul cafe but that’s fine. Ugh.

4:46pm: I just flipped out and said that there has to be a family out there who would appreciate me and my joyful presence and witty candor etc and Chooch started to list off the traits that I apparently “forgot” such as how I am supposedly “emotionally manipulative” and Henry started yelling about how I’m treated like a princess while meanwhile I was trying to remember what else I had said about myself and Chooch said “maybe if you weren’t listing off lies, you’d remember.”

5:19pm: It’s not Seoul :(

In the middle of trying to dodge my surprise snaps.

5:51pm: at Monster Vegan and Hall & Oats was playing when we walked in and everyone is so awesome and cool here!

7:10pm: We opted to walk back to the car which we left parked on the Drexel campus rather than take the subway again because we need to digest this dinner – shoooooo, it was so good but heavy.

Henry cutting my Argento chicken parm because I didn’t feel like it haha.

7:28pm: Ugh just left the parking garage what a long ass day.

I’m going to end this here because we’re just driving back to our hotel which is in Harrisburg – we wanted to:

1. Not have to drive all the way to Philly after work yesterday;

2. Be close to Hershey Park which is what we’re doing tomorrow.

I can’t foresee anything exciting happening between now and then so see you later, Mary. Give Peter and Paul a kiss for me, etc.

Sep 182023
 

Good morning. It’s 10:04am and we just left Super H-Mart. I wanted to get a head start on alcohol for the Xmas party that I decided to have because it’s not actually a Xmas party but possibly A HOLIDAY THAT I INVENTED??!!

It’s hard to get good soju flavors in Pgh and makgeolli is non-existent.

Anyway!! Riot Fest was…surreal. It definitely didn’t give me as many feels overall as it has in the past so I guess I am firmly rooted in K-Town at this point. Obviously the bands still did it for me but as far as Riot Fest itself goes, eh. I was content with just doing the one day as opposed to all three that’s for sure. My body hates me enough for just the one day.

Aside from the Cure though, the best part of yesterday was seeing VICKI from our Chicago office!!! She’s part of my old group in the department and I have only gotten to see her once when she and another lady from Chicago came to our Pgh office for a few days. I LOVED hanging out with her then so I was determined to see her this weekend. I’m so happy she made time for us!!

We took the train in from where we were staying outside of the city. Henry the PubTrans expert was like WE NEED TO TRANSFER TO THE PINK LINE and when I told Vicki of these alleged plans, she said NO. DO THIS INSTEAD and told us to transfer to the ORANGE line and then she picked us up at whatever stop she told us to get off on and it was so easy – thanks Vicki! This is why we come to her at work with the hard questions haha.

Anyway, she took us to this breakfast place called STAX and poor Henry just sat there shoveling food into his mouth while Vicki and I chatted like long lost army friends. Actually this was preferable to Henry haha.

I changed my mind four times but then I saw LEMON LAVENDER pancakes and was like “gimme those NOW.”

As soon as we sat though, I took off my jacket and said VERY SERIOUSLY, “Vicki I have to tell you something that no one knows at work.”

I could sense Henry rolling his eyes because he knew what it was going to be, but Vicki was on HIGH ALERT and said, “oh my god what is it, Erin?”

Like I’m about to announce to her my pending resignation, but instead it was, “I think I may have invented a new holiday.”

“Oh Erin!” she said, letting out a deep breath and I’m over here like, what? This is a big deal worthy of a suspenseful announcement.

Anyway, she seemed skeptical but I will still invite her to the party because it will probably be worth traveling for.

(Future Henry reading this: *frowning, head shake*)

The only downside is that now that Vicki met Henry, she said she feels like she is going to side with Glenn more in group chat!!!!

Then she was kind enough to drop us off at Riot Fest afterward! What a great start to the day. It was definitely go downhill from there for a bit but then the Great Start made a comeback.

We’ll discuss separately.

It’s 10:58am and we’re in Indiana now if you were wondering.

1:33pm (the time went ahead an hour at some point here in Indiana): just ate a lunch of Kimbap and gyeongdan from Hmart in the parking lot of 7-11. I need to go back to Korea ASAP.

Now let’s look at some pictures from our Saturday ‘date’ night in Chicago (I guess it was like a date??? We held hands for like a minute):

I was wearing my Parker’s Maple Barn tshirt and it made me miss Alyson so much!

Anyway, after we ate at Chicago Diner (see previous post!) we went to Millennium Park – apparently Mexican Independence was being celebrated and the excitement was contagious!! A continuous parade of cars waving giant Mexican flags were cruising around in controlled chaos. I loved it. As someone who doesn’t really have a heritage, I’m always so interested in seeing other people celebrate their culture and history.

2:21pm: we were just a rest stop in Indiana. When I came out of the bathroom, I found Henry in line at 7-11 waiting to pay for an energy bar. Then he gets out of line, right, and comes over to me like some fucking Kevin Costner hero type and asks, “did you want something?”

Ok first of all, don’t act like a GALLANT GENTLEMAN when you were already in line to check out in the first place without a second thought about me! It was only because he saw me walk in and remembered that I existed!!!

More Chicago pictures:

I truly enjoyed walking around by the water! I think the ONE BEER I had at dinner was tampering my mood swings and making me an agreeable cutie sweetie.

I just typed that without thinking so I guess my subconscious assessment of myself is pretty generous.

There was a pretty decent public restroom along the River walk. Pittsburgh would never.

We stopped at a bar along the River walk and got another drink. I got a cider. I need you to know that this was two hours after I had a beer at dinner, and I was maybe a few more sips away from coming home with a public intoxication souvenir on my record. I was really trying to join a flash mob or facilitate a coups of some sort by the time we got up to continue walking.

I wanted Henry to take a picture of my nails but he took this in such a way that I look like I’m sniffing my fingertips?! So I made him take another but I wanted to try and cross my eyes in it:

“Were my eyes crossed??!!” I cried after he took this.

“Um, no,” Henry said, turning his phone to me so I could see.

“Oh shit OK HEAR ME OUT that’s because I was looking to the side to see if I could see myself crossing my eyes,” I said and Henry was like, “omg.”

I was definitely cut off after that. I just don’t drink very often so when I do, I’m an disaster waiting to happen. We were walking way too close to the river, if you know what I mean.

Then we walked to Firecakes, a donut place we’ve been to before while visiting Chicago. What a concept: a donut shop that’s opened until 11pm. Another thing that Pgh would never. Here you’re lucky if any bakery is opened until 2 and even then god speed if you there hoping for a full selection lol.

Anyway, it’s a very small storefront and I was trying to get a picture when some douchebag walked in along with his brigade of dick-friends and sucked all the air out of the space with their aggressive brand of toxic masculinity. As we were about to leave, the caboose of the cocktrain opened the door, which I stupidly thought was a gesture of chivalry, but instead he leaned out the door and called out to his BUDDY, “Hey Rob you want a donut??” Rob said no and then the asshole LET THE DOOR CLOSE ON ME.

“WOW! What a DOUCHEBAG!” I cried. “He totally let the door close on me! I should have stepped on his fucking Peter Pan shoes.”

He was always inside Firecakes but ROB WAS STILL STANDING THERE so I made sure he heard. Report back to your little buddy, brosef!

“Peter Pan shoes?” Henry repeated.

Yeah, you know. Those dicky leather dress shoes that are elongated and come to a point?! That’s what he was wearing. What a yuppie.

Henry got a chocolate covered banana cake donut which was basically just a donut with thin chocolate banana slices on top. I was like, “ugh you chose poorly” but then I tasted it and it was wettest-in-the-best-way donut I have ever had. So moist and delicious! I couldn’t believe it. Mine was just ok in comparison – a pistachio old fashioned which I had the last night but there was nothing else that stood out to me.

Anyway, I liked Henry’s idiot donut so much that I was just talking about it again this morning. You know what it tasted like??? Those hostess powered donuts without the powder and if they were made with better ingredients and you got to eat them that day.

But yeah, Firecakes. Try it sometime but don’t be a Peter Pan-Dick and shut the door on people, ok?

5:12pm: Holy shit this drive is boring. 1:49 left.

I’m still really giddy about this new holiday. Should I trademark it??!! I don’t want to say too much about it yet because ONE OF YOU PEOPLE MIGHT STEAL IT.

I wish I had counted how many times Henry has called me a dick this weekend. I’m starting to get a complex.

Lol @ “starting.”

I’m posting this now. Maybe I’ll be back later to say more. Who can be sure.

Sep 042023
 

This was going to be a LiveBlog yesterday while we were at King’s Dominion and I did start it, I swear, but it was like 95 degrees out and I was swaying in and out of consciousness all day lol.

Here’s how it started:

****

We’re at King’s Dominion today! Got here around 1pm. Grizzly was our first coaster because it was recently retracked and soooo jackhammery before. I was interested to see if it was better. And it was!! Until we got to the part that wasn’t retracked. A jarring transition.

But the Bae, Twisted Timbers, made up for it!!

I305 – still the only coaster that sincerely terrifies me but goddamn I love it so much. This is the most I have ever grayed out, Jesus.

Apparently Henry took this of us standing in line for Tumbili, which was an annoying wait as usual for 4d free spins. Suddenly Henry has a new phone that takes decent photos. I’m shook.

4:04pm: been standing in line for this stupid rapids ride for like 45 minutes when everything else is practically a walk-on. Yay 93 degree day. Some lady in front of us started to pass out and her group had to take her out of line :( I saw her sitting down afterward and asked if she was ok and she said YES and thanked me for asking while rude-asses Henry and Chooch breezed past her with nary a well-wish.

This was the WORST ops I have ever seen a rapids ride. Usually the thru-put is so high because the rafts never stop moving on a conveyor belt but this one would have three rafts come to a complete stop while people would exit and then new people would board. It was frustrating, especially when you were done with the stupid ride but had to sit on an uncomfortable incline, waiting to be in the next group of three that got to exit.

We sat with a younger couple and Henry was like OH HO HO HO!!! when she and I both got pelted with water but he was ONLY looking at her because she was the younger, better model and acted like she was the only one who got soaked when I was sitting there scrunched up as my entire backside and part of my left side were drenched?!?! And he kept talking about it after the ride too and I was like “bitch can you not see that I am literally sopping wet?!” That whole experience was so frustrating. Just another day of being invisible to Henry. Can’t wait to get married 🙄

You guys I love Racer so much even though the dumb thing doesn’t race anytime we’re here!

****

Ok that’s as far as I got yesterday so I guess I will continue this while we’re making our way back home but first we are going to get breakfast at some place I’ve been Instagram stalking for years but it’s 20 minutes out of the way and the location that had the French toast special I wanted is closed and the other one has different specials but this fits with the theme of this overnight trip of Erin not getting what she wanted. Hoo boy you should have been there last night during the ICE CREAM FIASCO which always seems to happen when we’re in Virginia. Virginians, quick question be honest – why do you guys hate ice cream?! Every time we come here it’s like HELLO where do you people go for ice cream that’s not a fucking Rita’s or DQ?!

Anyway!! Here you can see some photos from SB’s LOVESHACK something or other! The location that had the FRENCH TOAST SPECIAL that I wanted was closed today and the other location just had plain French toast so I was sad BUT it at least came with blue whipped cream and glitter so that made me happy.

Chooch got a Lakeside Latte which was a caramel and maple delight so then Henry had to copy.

Anyway, we had a great waiter who was wearing a green furry cowboy hat and liked my Pee Wee shirt. From my KEEN OBSERVATION I would say we got the best waiter there.

Anyway, everything was B52’s themed. Imagine liking the B52’s so much that you open two restaurants dedicated to them.

OMG what if I suddenly was an expert at restaurant stuff and opened one themed to @nct ?????!!! And every time someone ordered a lemonade, an alarm would go off and NCT127’s Lemonade would come blaring out?! And I would have an entire section of NCT lemonade favors (they would all be dyed lime green obviduh) to greaten the odds of one being ordered?! DID I JUST REALIZE MY LIFE GOAL?!

Maybe I’ll enroll in college with Chooch so I can learn restaurant stuff.

Or maybe I should just grab a cardboard box and set up a lemonade stand.

Should we talk about more King’s Dominion stuff now that I am full of edible glitter and we’re headed back to Pittsburgh? Ok. Thanks for the permission.

We have never ridden the Ferris wheel here but in case you were wondering if one exists, it does.

The new section is really nice! Tumbili is not great (slow AF ops but these rides are notorious for being slow to load in general) but it’s really nice to look at – it’s themed on a monkey I guess? So the cars are supposed to be monkeys playing on vines in a jungle. The supports were even painted to look like bamboo which was a nice touch.

The second time we rode Intimidator 305 wasn’t *as* good as earlier that day but damn this ride. I can’t imagine riding this for the first time knowing nothing about it and then graying out and thinking you were going to die.

Chooch took this photo and the spots on the lens gave me a angry flashback to when my old DSLR had spots inside somewhere but I was too ambivalent to investigate and correct the issue. But yeah I made him take this picture when we were sitting on the brake run (HIS PHONE WAS SECURELY STOWED AWAY IN HIS ZIPPERED POCKET DURING THE RIDE, NICE TRY NARCS!!!) because of the crow flying by.

FLIGHT OF FEAR!!! Henry did not want to ride this but it’s air conditioned inside the queue (well, it’s supposed to be but this time the A/C seemed to be limited to station). I actually love this ride a lot. It might have been the first launched coaster I’ve ever ridden back when I first went to King’s Island in 2004? Could that be true though?? Maybe. I don’t know. Who can be sure.

I liked the ride op for this one because he was fucking with the riders so hard before the sending the train. For us, an alarm went off and I actually fell for it, I thought there was, I dunno, a security breach or something. But right when I started to say “What is th—-” to Chooch, the launch happened and I was the only person screaming like GP.

***

BACK TO REAL TIME: it is 1:23pm and we are at the Fairfax Coffee Co or something in Berkeley Springs, WV waiting for our lunch to go.

Cute vibes and good veg/vegan options!

And good bathroom selfie mirror!

Food quality TBD. I’ll get back to you on that, blog.

Some asshole child abandoned their sunglasses on the couch at the cafe because children do not value their possessions. I know this because I’m the owner of a 17-year-old child who does not value his possessions. Actually, here he is modeling the sunglasses in question.

Went next door to an antique mall while Henry was waiting for the food. I found nothing that spoke to me. Henry said “thank god.”

Ate our sandwiches (or “sandos” if you’re one of those pretentious Oak Hill Post pricks). Henry got the “Reubenesque” which was a Reuben (duh) with faux-whatever meat is on a Reuben. Chooch and I both got a PB&J. Henry and I shared ours and while his was good, I was the loser in that scenario because the PB&J was way more satisfying (or, as my phone’s autocorrecting wants you to believe: SATs dying.)

Jesus, Henry calm down. (This is out of focus because I was about to take a picture of my own half and saw him going in for the kill out of the corner of my eye and had to snap it up.)

This town is quaint. And only around 2.5 hours from home. Will I go out of my way to return? Maybe put a bingsu cafe in there somewhere and a Kpop shop. Watch me fly back.

****

Anyway, back to yesterday. King’s dominion was an alright time. I was fine until the very end (we left around 8:30) when I wanted soft serve and the only option at KD is Rita’s. Excuse me sir but there is a Rita’s 2 minutes from my house. I think Rita’s is overrated.

So yeah, Chooch and I rode Dominator as our last ride and then the Great Ice Cream Blowout of the Third Quarter happened which is nothing new. I was also PMSing heavily at this point so my actions should be excused as I am generally a precious Angel baby cotton candy loaf.

(The way I can picture Henry frowning at that entire statement…)

You know what we never fought about in European amusement parks? Ice cream. Because there were ice cream options on every corner I swear to Christ.

Also, the bathrooms were excelsior. Clean. Pretty. Private. Plus you could tell which stalls were vacant without having to pace like a panther in the wild, trying to peek under to spot feet.

Oh and our lunch at KD cost $77. 🤢 Granted, it was satisfying (for Chooch and me anyway, Henry was underwhelmed) but when you consider that Chooch and I had to choose three sides since all of the entrees were meat, plus Henry got a chocolate chip cookie in addition to his entree meal, and Chooch got a tiny strawberry shortcake, this still doesn’t seem like $77’s worth of food but what do I know, I took zero economics classes in school.

Take me back.

***

Hi, back to today. We are 1:23 hours from home so I will end this here.

Jul 022023
 

Hey-heaux it’s live blog time! We just had a lively Quality Inn breakfast. Some heavily-Southern accented man came in with big intensity and immediately started fucking with the waffle maker with major confidence. I mean, the way he approached this, it was the air of a man who had made many complimentary hotel waffles in his time. But then it started beeping and he screamed for his wife to help. She came over quietly, did not look alarmed at all even though I was CLENCHED in my seat, and calmly said, “you have to flip it. It’s telling you to flip it.” He tried to argue that this couldn’t possible be the case because he JUST STARTED IT but then she swiftly flipped the thing over and voila, beeping stopped.

“Oh. Ok thanks!” he said, mood shifting back to pleasant morning sunshine mood. But then as we were walking out, HE COULDNT FIND THE BUTTER!!! She was trying to help him rifle through the condiment tower and he was getting angrier and angrier, which brought back memories of 5 minutes earlier when I also could not find the butter after being TICKLED to see biscuits on display (I always want biscuits on these southern road trips obvi) so I said, “Are you looking for the butter? Because it’s in the cooler over there. I couldn’t find it either!” First, they had both whipped around to look at me with this expression of WHO IS THIS YANKEE HARLOT THAT DEIGNS INFILTRATE OUR EARS WITH HER NORTHERN DIALECT but then they quickly softened when they realized I was HELPING so they gratefully thanked me.

Chooch said that he was in there alone with the guy before we got there and the guy yelled “where’s the fucking creamer??” to Chooch, and then screamed for the “coffee girl” to come help, but it wasn’t a girl, it was a man, and Chooch said the same thing, that once the hotel employee pointed out the creamer to him, he apologetically said, “oh my bad!”

We actually walked in on the tail end of this confrontation and I could tell we had JUST missed the heated climax. There was tension sizzling as the man retreated with his coffee.

Anyway, it’s 7:35am and we are making our way out of Georgia after a FANTASTIC evening at Fun Spot last night. Seriously, it was everything I hoped and more, worth driving 11 hours from Pgh for one coaster, but then the little park ended up being very pleasant overall and the experience was worth it.

9:03am: ugh just stopped at Buc-ees. This place is so intense and overwhelming – I can’t tell if I like it or hate it.

Babe, wake up. #followmeto Buc-ees for beef jerky, “world famous restrooms,” and diabetes. And…candles.

This place is fucking ridiculous. But I guess if you like big meats and freedom, it’s for you! And you’ll know if one is in a 200 mile radius because you’ll start seeing billboards every mile.

11:27am: oh where have I been, you ask? Just reading this novella-length article about Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova’s friendship-turned rivalry-back to friendship and how their life has had so many parallels that they even got cancer at the same time. You guys, I’m crying. Their history is insane and knowing that they supported each other through cancer recently is so pure and amazing but also I know feel like I have cancer running all through my body and am paranoid, panicked, petrified.

Also, we are apparently in Tennessee because Henry made the unilateral decision to take a different route home.

2:10pm:

At Lucky Dog Cafe in Winchester, KY after fighting for a solid hour over where to stop for lunch. It always a point of contention. Anyway, look at how cute this town is!

2:32pm: Chooch just said he’s going to use the bathroom so I said please don’t do anything weird in there, and Henry thought I said, “why are you an inbred American?” So now I laughed myself to tears.

This place is nice but they have HUNTS KETCHUP. I question any establishment that chooses to put HUNTS on their tables over HEINZ.

SHUDDER.

2:50pm: Back in the car after a short walking tour of downtown Winchester, home to Ale81 (some white bitch was waiting for her Ale81 DOORDASH when he walked by and then we saw like two other references/ads for it immediately after so I’m just assuming here) and this really disgusting mural:

So gross.

4:11pm: I guess we’re still in Kentucky because we stopped at a Love’s that had Kentucky merch. Anyway, I got tired of waiting for Henry to finish his shit session (ugh) so I went back out to the car RIGHT AS CHOOCH WAS OPENING HIS DOOR BC HE FARTED SO BAD EVEN HE KNEW THE CAR NEEDED AIRED OUT. This made me flip out and go back in the store, where Henry was now roaming around after completing his DISCHARGE, and demanded that we buy air freshener. We got a can of Glade so now our car stinks like vanilla lavender and the stench of Chooch’s lies as he swears he didn’t fart.

4:24pm: Wow finally in WV. This is allegedly the first time we’ve taken this particular route and I don’t know how I feel about it. Kentucky was very boring.

6:55pm: Still in WV. Stopped at one of the worst Sheetz ever – small, no traffic flow, super annoying. Apparently the line for the men’s room was really long because a Coach tour bus had rolled up so King Henry came over to the neighboring BFS, aka Big Fuck Stick, to pee. So high maintenance.

7:52pm: just entered PA!! 58 more minutes, supposedly.

11:13pm: So my blog was hacked again, woo hoo! I wrote this whole ass post on Notes and I’m waiting for the blog police to call Henry back after my blog is restored so I can post this idiocy.

But anyway, we got home around 9pm RIGHT BEFORE A STORM BLEW THRU and idiot Henry couldn’t find the housekey. He started rummaging in the console for it when we were about 5 minutes away from home and it was CLEAR that it wasn’t in there but he just KEPT RUMMAGING and finally I snapped, “OK guy, it’s not in there! Give it up! This isn’t Mary Poppins’ bag, there is a bottom” and for some reason, Chooch thought this was so funny and couldn’t stop laughing and then this pissed off Henry even more.

“It’s probably in your fucking purse,” Chooch scoffed, thus making it my turn to crack the fuck up because Henry has this stupid sling thing that he takes on trips and of course Chooch calls it his purse which makes Henry seethe.

Anyway, it ended up being in his other shorts in his suitcase which he didn’t discover until after we got home and he practically dumped the contents of his purse on the front porch and then I said, “I thought you said earlier that they were probably in your black shorts” so then he started to rifle through his overnight bag in the trunk and there they were, lololol.

Jun 182023
 

Good morning from Cedar Point! Expecting it to be packed today as usual but at least it’s something to do.

Walking to SteVe, immediately.

Visiting Daddy on Father’s Day! Love you Papa SteVe!!

11:13am: Literally the best experience we had on SteVe. Wait was estimated at 40 min and it took less than that, no breakdowns while we were in line, and they let Chooch and me have the back. I love this stupid fucking psycho coaster so much!

Henry got front row and is so smug about it.

Now he’s making us wait in line for Maverick which is broken down and I hate this gamble!!! It almost never works out well for us.

me: new thing! Since I’m liveblogging let’s take a selfie in every line we wait in.

Thanks Chooch.

11:38am: Fuck you, Maverick. Moving on because I couldn’t take hearing the bitch in front of me talk about her basic bitch interests anymore.

11:54am ditched Henry, now in line for Iron Dragon 🐉

ALSO, Chooch hates my new selfie rule.

iron dragon was way FUNNER than I remember FYI.

12:45pm: got lunch at the new pavilion and the service was TRASH. the roll was the best part of the meal. Views are nice though!

They’re playing retro ragtag covers of shitty pop songs though and a Taylor Swift one is on now so that dragged down the lunch review.

Chooch bonded with a guy in the bathroom over the awful music. “I didn’t think they could make Taylor Swift worse.”

12:54pm Gatekeeper selfie!

everyone hates me!

That was the best Gatekeeper ride I’ve ever had!

1:29pm: Carousel line selfie!

1;51pm: Choochs phone just died and he wants to go home because now he will either have to talk to “us guys” or look at the sky LOLOL.

Waiting for out old car thing! Henry can’t hear.

We got the slowest car here and people are on our asses. Chooch is so pissed. He just said he feels like Janna lol hi Janna!

2:03pm: RAPTOR’S LINE IS LIKE 10 MINUTES!!

Ok I’m saying it: Raptor is my favorite B&M invert. I SAID IT.

now we’re in line for the new Wild Mouse which is an HOUR wait and the guys in front of me are wearing patchouli and chooch is being pissy.

Pissy “I wouldn’t be in a bad mood all day if I had a belt” Chooch.

3:08pm: Still in line. Some little kid the next row over tapped me on the shoulder and said excuse me you have a bug on your shirt and of course I always think I’m the butt of a joke so I panicked but I did indeed have a MAYFLY on my shirt so Henry got it off for me which then turned into me blaming Henry for not doing a better job guarding my person from bugs and other harmful things.

3:14pm: Still in line but maybe another 15? At least people here aren’t assholes like at Canada’s Wonderland.

I asked chooch if he is immediately going to add this to his spreadsheet and he said I CANT MY PHONE IS DEAD. lololol. Also “Call Me Maybe” is on right now!!

3:53pm: that was the best Wild Mouse I’ve ever been on! It was trimless! Henry bit his lip lol. We got the pink car!

Now we’re in line for Gemini which only I am excited for!

The way I have to beg for these selfies though.

ugh stupid Henry has to treat himself.

5:01pm:

Rode MaxAir, it was fine.

Now Chooch is spending money. He won a medium sized prize!

5:11pm: We left! Bye bye Cedar Point!

Some thoughts from the car:

  • Raptor was a big highlight – from the delightfully enthusiastic dad & 2 kids in front of us to the overall fantastic ride, I declared that it was my second favorite ride in the whole park.
  • SO MUCH TAYLOR SWIFT WAS HEARD TODAY.
  • This was the first time we didn’t ride Millie and that felt kind of weird. We were actually only in that area once, even.
  • This was the best ride I’ve ever had on Gatekeeper. I even grayed out!
  • I got stapled on Gemini so that wasn’t very enjoyable.
  • We didn’t ride Magnum! I will only ride it if it’s a station wait bc I do like it but it hurts!
  • I thought the addition of Wild Mouse to the revamped boardwalk area was really cute and fits nicely with the theme. It just sucks that it’s such a short ride and will probably always have a long wait because even the shittiest Wild Mouses in other parks get notoriously long waits. But I thought the theming was super eye-catching and I also liked that they were playing legit beach music in that area. I did suggest to Chooch that they should play the Back to the Beach soundtrack and he rolled his eyes at me.
  • Only lowlight really was MAVERICK (so sick of that one breaking down constantly) and the service we experienced at the new Grand Pavilion. The cashier was nice though, I should specify that the coldness was reserved for the people behind the food counter thing. Not a single person made eye contact with us or smiled. It made me so uncomfortable and I almost didn’t even want to order anything from there.
  • The cookies were back to being good!! I feel like the last time we got them from the bakery they were really dry and stale. The snickerdoodles were sooooo MOIST today.
  • Overall, it wasn’t really crowded there at all for a weekend. I wish we were had been staying over though so we could have stayed until close because I can only imagine how many more rides we could have made it on. Every time I checked the ride times, SteVe had never gone past 60 minutes which is unheard of. But I was content with the one ride we got on it this morning, especially since we only had to wait about 30 minutes!
  • Maybe someday, someone will actually want to come with us?? I tried to get my brother to come with us but he promised our dad he’d go over for a visit and, oh yeah, I guess it was Father’s Day after all lol.

The end.

May 142023
 

(I should put this disclaimer in all of my blog posts but please be advised that I write most of my posts from my phone and sometimes words get autocorrected answers* I don’t notice, or I just create typos all of my own volition but I’m a stoop in that way. Apologies in advance. Bueno bueno.)

*(SEE???? Just swerving by a month later and noticed this. I guess that was supposed to be “and”??)

Hello good morning sweateeees I wasn’t going to LiveBlog but now I feel like it. It is currently 9:27am and we just had a fun stop at Sheetz in Wheeling. Some broad came rushing over to me and legit cried, “I JUST HAVE TO TELL YOU THAT I LOVE LOVE LOVE UR SWEATER. ITS FANTASTIC!” And it was a really nice Sheetz moment, you know? Chooch came slithering around the corner and hissed, “WHAT did she say?” Because as you know, Chooch hates it when I am the recipient of compliments.

Then as we were walking away from the check out, someone came up behind us and fucking ROARED their cigarette order in a marbled slur, making us all whip our heads around to see TO WHOM THE VOICE BELONGED. As expected, it was a very large (in height and girth) truck driver.

11:02am: at a rest stop somewhere in Ohio and I just screamed out the name of a coaster enthusiast that I have been trying to think of since last night and no one cares lol. (It is SLOAN by the way – I kept saying “it’s an ambiguous name and also the name of a character from a popular 80s movie” like I knew the name the whole time but was just trying to get other ppl to guess??)

All you have missed so far is me bitching about social media attention-grabbers.

11:29am: Chooch just asked if we were going outside anywhere, like…we didn’t just drive all the way to Columbus to sit in the car, so…?

I asked why and he said, “because somehow* I got Dunkin all over my shirt.”

*SOMEHOW. Because he is still a child!! Henry just said, “I guess we need to start bringing the diaper bag with us in the car again.” Honestly!! 17 years old but some things never change.

He just asked for an I Love Ohio shirt to change into lol.

Waiting for our fooooood!

Lunchin’ with Mikey!

Ok, this has got to be top 3 best vegan places I’ve eaten at, now that we’ve had two experiences I feel like I can safely and confidently say that. I got the fish sandwich and nearly wept into it.

General Tso’s wings – amazing. Chunky bois. Lotsa umami. Chooch got the sandwich version, and Henry got the Buffy Mac which is a chicken sandwich with Mac and cheese on it.

We were all satisfied. And also happy that we got there within five minutes of the lunch time rush, phew.

Meanwhile, since seventeen year old still travels like a toddler and ended up arriving in Columbus with stains and spills all over his shirt, we had to buy him a shirt from the place we’re eating lunch at and now it’s like he’s That Guy who wears the band’s shirt to their concert OMG no lol.

1:12pm: we just left some rose garden thing and it was a nice way to digest after that filling lunch.

We managed to not fight once! Chooch was mostly distracted by the online auctions he’s bidding on.

1:51pm: SOUND THE BUZZER! Henry finally managed to ruin my day!!!!!! We went to Belle’s Bakery because they presumably have shaved ice which I stupidly thought was the Americanized way of saying they have kakigori. Since the bingsu place is closed on Sundays, I figured the Japanese version would suffice.

It was REALLY crowded so Henry said he would wait in line and then me and Chooch walked over to a Japanese gift store, at which point I lost him, but then found him again when he texted me and said he never left the store??

Anyway, when I saw Henry walk out of the bakery with literally just a cup of shaved iced a la Rita’s, I was sooooo mad. He at that point went back in and got the matcha soft serve that I had specifically asked for, in a separate cup, but it just wasn’t it, dawg.

I really thought it was going to be the GOOD “shaved ice” and not “actual shaved ice” so I poured bigly but now we are going to a vegan bakery to salvage the day.

Meanwhile, Chooch has been bidding on a “smart oven” all day, whatever that means, and keeps giving us updates.

2:12pm: just stopped here for spoiled son to get a game:

It was actually less creepy inside.

Healthcare send Heidi phone why need like cell? I have Spotify I don’t know why you talking about quiet woman here this time I think you would like that I thought of you like to wait for you little while 70s hits really put its way.

^^^^^ UM my phone auto-typed that based on the convo Henry and I were just having. Definitely leaving it in haha. 

2:37pm: Happy Little Treats!

Lady working here was very nice and the bakery itself is a delight! Interior design inspo….???

I got the cherry almond Poptart and it righted the wrongs created by Henry and Belle’s Bakery. It was JUST RIGHT.

3:59pm: We’re finally making our way home after taking a detour to NEWARK, OHIO which I am here to confirm is basically as a smaller but still shitty version of Newark, NJ. We went there because they had a gaming place but their board game selection was really slim so we walked in and basically walked right back out and Chooch was embarrassed about this for some reason.

I made Henry drive us through “downtown” and it was pretty shitty but the courthouse was pretty.

Then we passed the Longaberger Basket building!!

True story: I dated a guy briefly in high school whose mom was a Longaberger salesperson and every time I would call their house, the machine would say YOU HAVE REACHED BARB* FROM LONGABERGER BASKET” and it always sounded wrong to me, like she had meant to say “longberger” without the “a.”

*I actually can’t remember her name now just that she really didn’t like me which is on brand because none of my boyfriends moms ever liked me. Most of my friends moms don’t like me either so I guess it’s a “me” problem.

5:07pm: at a rest stop in Ohio somewhere between Zanesville and Wheeling. When Henry and I were getting out, Henry was being deaf as usual so Chooch said, “OMG I said it twice…three four times” harkening back to our second time in Korea when Henry flipped out on us at a cafe in a Jeonju (while sharing bingsu, coincidentally!!) because we were moving him and he said something about how “OK! You don’t have to repeat it twice three four times!” Of course, Chooch and I latched on to this and STILL reference it. So today in retaliation, Henry said, “fuck off two three four times.” OOH OK TOUGH GUY.

After peeing, Henry proceeded to do some weird ceremonial circling around the car and he was making us so nervous. Chooch kept yelling WHAT ARE YOU DOING I WANT TO GET HOME (apparently “getting the circulation flowing”) and at this same time I noticed that Chooch had a bag of HOT MUSTARD Doritos in the backseat with him so I exclaimed “Ooh I want to try it!” Chooch got real triggered by this and snapped I DONT WANT TO OPEN THE BAG so I said, “Wow, OK. It’s Mother’s Day but whatever” and he shouted OH MY GOD and threw the bag at me.

Hot mustard Doritos are good, you guys!!

7:50pm: Hello, checking in from home. Henry pretty much IMMEDIATELY went upstairs and collapsed into bed which is making me really scared to get old(er) because this was just a day trip? We didn’t do that much? He went to be bed at 11pm last night and we didn’t wake up to start getting ready to leave until around 7am. I was up until after 2am chatting with Janna and trying to teach her the names of THREE NCT members. Just three! I’m the one who should be passed in bed but mmm. Cook on, Henry.

To summarize, today was really good aside from the SHAVED ICE incident!

Apr 072023
 

Hello it’s 8:12am and we’re leaving our dumb hotel in Toledo-ish to start the second leg of our Chicago journey. I’m glad I didn’t live blog last night because it was extremely uneventful unless you consider me having my dinner hopes and dreams dashed twice in a row before finally settling on Sheetz which is what I should have just done when we were still near home but I said NO, MAYBE WE CAN STOP SOMEWHERE BETTER ON THE WAY but then Oath pizza had a confusing menu and a worker who was too busy fucking around with ingredients to pay attention to us and then another rest stop has a Freshens which excited me because I wanted something healthy and was eyeing up the rice bowls but, as if reading my mind, a surly worker emerged from the back and mumbled, “Just so you know, we’re out of rice bowls” extremely eventful.

FUCK YOU.

(Not you!! The food places.)

We’re at Flying Joe. I got a BLUE BIRD latte (white choc/lav) even though I came in here just wanting a regular coffee. Sigh. Henry got a lemoncello cold brew which sounds disgusting.

We’ll see. I liked the woman who waited on us.

I also got a kombucha because my stomach is begging for it.

ok Henry’s has a lemon cold foam on it which is delicious. I didn’t taste it with the coffee itself though. I dunno, it was a fine experience except that one of my fave NCT Dream songs came on RIGHT when we got there and I was sad to get out of the car.

9:56am: just stopped at PETRO in Somewhere, Indiana because I had to pee so bad but first I had to walk past a rack of NOT GUILTY Trump shirts (mmm) and a hunting knife kiosk. Ugh. I hated it there except that Demi Lovato’s “Heart Attack” was playing (love that song) and the bathroom soap smelled nice.

Hi.

Then Henry drove right down the road to Pilot to get gas and I screamed WHY DIDNT WE JUST COME HERE TO BEGIN WITH and he said “I dunno” with a mouthful of pretzels. Ugh.

Lolololol.

12:59am: Dude.

12:34: oh fuck I am fully stuffed you guys. What a great experience!!

Fish sandwich!! I have been craving a good vegan fish sandwich ever since the not-great one we recently got in Pgh. I really do not understand the Pgh vegan scene at all. Every other city we go to has it locked down, but Pghs over there having vegan restaurants that only open when they want and, as Henry pointed out, caters to only one demographic: white hipster assholes. With the exception of Sugar Spell (and Zenith, which is not fully vegan) I have always felt like an interloper at these establishments.

Henry got a po boy but my photo sucks:

Also, their chocolate chip cookies were bus.

12:38pm: Henry just performed a series of weird nose noises and I asked him to please calm down. “CALM DOWN WHAT??? WHAT AM I DOING??” Clueless.

1:24pm: we’re back in the car after doing a WALK ABOUT at some small park near where we ate lunch. I can’t eat and then sit in the car – I need to digest, Fran.

Henry loves when he’s about to take my picture and I say “wait! Should I pose?” and then activate my signature floppy limb stance. (Also, 6.5 hours until NCT Dream!)

There were a lot of different birds at this park because it was surrounding a lake, and it made me miss Chooch because he loves ducks, geese, and seagulls, and this spot had them in abundance.

Chooch, in case you’re wondering, is home with the cats, not even remotely caring that we’re gone.

3:56pm: in case you’re wondering, we checked into our room at the Wyndham for about 90 minutes now. We drove past the Allstate Arena on the way here and NCT Dream was already there and I was SWEATING.

Our hotel is decent. Henry napped off and on the whole time and I did a Grow With Jo workout and watched Friends. Then I got dressed for tonight (a preliminary run) and made Henry take pictures of me which is his favorite thing to do. But now we’re on our way to this vegan Korean restaurant for a light dinner before the show!!

5:01pm: We swung by Amitabul for some vegan Korean fare and lemme tell you something: if I lived in this area, I would be a regular. So peaceful and the food felt fully nourishing!

Spicy kimchi maki roll!

(Wait hold on we’re in the car going back to the hotel now and Henry said I BET THESE TINY HOUSES COST $300,000 AND THEY DONT EVEN HAVE DRIVEWAYS and I said “they’re cute but this area seems congested” and then immediately second-guessed myself because sometimes when I try to say adult things, I’m exposed, but Henry said “that it does” – I constructed an adult statement and it was correct, you guys!)

Back to dinner:

I got the Buddha Bop and it was delectable. I ordered the spiciest version and it was a gochujang explosion of ecstasy in my mouth-space. Ugh I love the taste of gochujang and sesame oil.

Meanwhile:

Chooch would have been THRU THE ROOF if he was here to hear Henry’s wet mastication of his meal with the soundtrack of a monk chanting “Om” on repeat playing from a speaker. It was actually making me twitch a bit.

We both only ate half because we were still full from lunch but now we’ll have food for after the concert at least!

6:01pm: we just came back to the hotel after getting some of the best lattes I’ve had at:

It’s inside a train station. I got an ube latte (hot) and Henry got an iced pistachio donut latte. We are both in agreement (I tried so hard to make agreeance a word) that they are quality.

 

“It’s because they’re handcuffed,” I said, AN INSIDE JOKE because I saw a sign that said their coffee drinks are hand-crafted and my shit eyes read it as “handcuffed.” Because that makes sense.

Some girl was in the station with her NCT lightstick!!!!

ITS ALMOST TIME so I have to change back into my concert clothes and say BYE.

(Bye!)

Nov 282022
 

Leaving Tennessee today! It’s 6:46am and we’re packing up the room which involves us throwing stuff at Henry and saying, “Here put this in here.”

We woke up extra early to get to Crockett’s Breakfast Camp right when they open at 7 because for some reason I have latched on to this place after watching YouTube videos about it but it gets super crowded. We got here at 6:56 and there was already a small group of people waiting.

Chooch and Henry are not impressed yet.

7:45am: Back at the hotel so Henry can “go to the bathroom” before we check out.

What you missed:

  • Henry being sulky that I made him order Aretha Frankenstein’s Griddle Cakes which are just thick boi pancakes made in a griddle because I wanted to try them but didn’t want my own order since it was too much for muh belly and also didn’t come with a side of PONE like the egg breakfasts do. I was obsessed with this mythical PONE and it turned out to just be a thimble-sized dollop of a mushy corn bread (almost like ChiChi’s, #rip) with cranberries. It was good but I wish I would have known that’s all it was.
  • The pancakes were GÜT!!!!
  • Our waitress had an accent and Henry was like IT SOUNDS CAJUN and chooch and I were like, “who were you talking to??” Because it was totally some sort of Eastern Euro I’m betting. Then we saw her name on the bill – JULIYA. So Cajun.
  • Had to check out the bathroom as per the uje. The broad in there with me left without washing her hands, ugh.

Last view from our balcony. We stayed at some lame SureStay / Best Western but it ended up being ok even though I threw a huge fit about it on Saturday just based on the parking lot, backside of the building lol oh, me.

9:34am Hoo boy we just had a great excursion to Clingmans Dome in the Smokies. I wanted to recreate a picture from 2011 and we tried to do this on Saturday but the mountains were SO CROWDED that we couldnt get even get a parking spot. So we came back this morning and it was basically snowing, soooo cold, but somehow we only argued once and very briefly??

I’ll post the recreation in a separate blog post because I used the DSLR for it.

11:00am: We’re only just leaving Pigeon Forge now. It took so long to drive out of the mountains and Henry refused to stop anywhere even though I purposely wore a nice sweater to have my picture taken in. But ok. Mm.

Stopped at a gas station in Pigeon Forge that was next to a Bojangles and as we were leaving I saw a sign for sweet potato pies so I made Henry go into Bojangles and get one but he had to wait ten minutes for new ones to be made and I actually hate saying this but it was lowkey worth it. McD’s-esque and the filling was so smooth and warm.

12:36pm: Starting to not be as sulky. Found a place to eat at in some rando’ Virginian town, stay tuned. Hopefully they’re actually open. Just sitting here in the meantime marveling over Renjun’s precious baby voice.

1:16pm: Made it to White Birch!

I haven’t had a golden latte in forever.

Guys. I got the vegan curry and it was…meh, sadly. It had huge chunks of crunchy onions and carrots that were barely cooked, stewed tomatoes (ugh), over rice and quinoa. I had to keep trying to eat around stuff and it didn’t even taste curry-ish, but more like a stew.

Chooch didn’t eat any of his wrap which I tasted and immediately wished I had ordered because it was delicious but Chooch is v. picky. So I guess that’s what I’m having for dinner.

Henry got a chicken salad sandwich or something who cares.

3:45pm: Henry made me drive for a little while and that was annoying.

I’m actually still driving right now while I’m blogging JUST KIDDING I’m not an asshole.

5:44pm: this drive is so boring. I finished a book (Palm Beach Finland). It was ok. We have been listening to NCT this whole time. Chooch is laying in the back being a baby.

7:37pm: We just stopped at a rest area in Pennsylvania and I swear to fucking GOD this is not familiar even though we are on this route very often??

I feel like if it’s not new-new, it is at the very least a renovated rest stop but Henry is arguing that it’s not. I mean it was like sparkling, even the bathroom, and the vending area had an intense number of options and a SITTING AREA.

When we were leaving, I pointed out the numbers along the side of the door and asked if it was in case you wanted to measure your height and Henry said it’s there for when there is a robbery/crime so you know the approx. height of the perp?? I never knew this. I literally thought it was there in case someone felt like checking their height for curiosity purposes.

8:14pm: we should be home in about 24 minutes so I’ll put this live blog out of its misery. Byeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Oct 132022
 

9:25am: hola, we have been on the road for nearly an hour and have only just gotten on the turnpike somehow. Had to stop at Sheetz in Monroeville but nothing eventful happened. I was mad because the old bitch making my latte stopped to have a conversation with one of the guys back there with her and I was furiously tapping my foot but then it somehow ended up being one of the better lattes Sheetz has ever served me. (I mean, it’s Sheetz, so…)

Last night, NCT announced that there is going to be a preshow merch opportunity starting at noon which is way earlier than we will be arriving in shitty Newark and I dunno for how long this thing will be open so of course I’m in a bad mood about this because panic and anxiety make me project onto Henry.

10:09am: The Korean version of Highway to Heaven was just on and I couldn’t hold back the tears any longer and Henry was like “Omg” and I wailed, “I don’t know if I can do this, Haechan is going to make me cryyyyy.” I hope whoever is sitting next to me is cool because I am going to need someone to lean on lol.

10:49am: Henry finally got his concert ticket! Well, I got it for him while he was driving.

He’s really mad because he wants to go but doesn’t want to sit alone with a bunch of screaming girls but he’s in like the very last section, second to last row so maybe there will be other parents back there with him??!!

Bathroom selfie now that I’m starting to not be as sullen lol.

11:25am:

Love/hate these. Sometimes (like now) they taste like I’ve been heavily SOBBING on a fainting couch for 5 hours. You know, that awful taste of tears needing an alternate outlet so they start flowing down your sinuses and into the back of your throat? Yeah, that taste (which I clearly know well).

Chasing that bitch with a lemon drop. That’s how we do it up in the Lee Jinki (THAT’S MY CAR’S NAME IN CASE YOU DIDNT KNOW).

2:34pm: BREAKING: Henry changed his NCT bias from Jungwoo to Yuta.

We’re about 40 minutes from Newark. This ride has been beyond boring. It rained heavily for a lot of it and that slowed us down a lot. Ugh. We’re supposedly still going straight to the venue to see if the early merch pop-up is still happening.

Then we’re getting take out from Urban Vegan and taking it back to the hotel where I will proceed to be sick because NERVES.

3:40pm: Hate you so much, Newark.

Anyway that early merch thing was happening but the line was pretty long and Henry was like IF YOU GET IN THAT LINE YOU MIGHT AS WELL PLAN ON JUST STAYING DOWN HERE UNTIL IT STARTS AT 8 and look Linda, I’m already going to be standing in a line to get in, I’ll take my chances and wait to get merch tonight ugh.

Also Henry is being such AN ASSHOLE DRIVER ever since we entered the hell hole that is Newark. He keeps snapping at me and I’m like alright brother, I’ll remember this.

I HATE YOU.

(He just asked why I took his picture and I told him it was for my blog wherein I declared my hatred for him and he said “oh it wasn’t on Insta so it doesn’t matter” and I said, “wow thanks for the reminder that no one reads my blog, guy.

“)

3:56pm: Mark Lee in this outside of Urban Vegan!

I originally saw it from pretty far away and yelled IS THAT MARK so I guess my shitty eyes really do just wanna see what they wanna see.

4:19pm: at least our room is ok.

5:17pm: I just did laps around the hotel because I’ve been sitting in the car all day and need to hit my step goal! Now Henry is napping and I’m bored so here are pictures of me with my NCT light stick:

Also! Pictures of our delicious Urban Vegan füdz that we ate in the room while watching the tail end of What Lies Beneath*:

Literally Henry turned on the TV and I saw a .0006 second glimpse of Michelle Pfeiffer on a staircase and I said, “is this What Lies Beneath??” As if this was a flick I watched religiously back in the day and not one (1) time when I rented it from Hollywood Video (probably).

I pulled the curtain shut so I live over on this side now. Henry can go to hell over there.

6:29pm: In Uber on why to Prudential Center. Posting this now but might be back!

11:59pm: On our way back to the hotel where I will proceed to cry my ugly face off because that was SO MUCH on my heart. SO MUCH.

Sep 052022
 

While many of you are off and enjoying whatever Labor Day is, I will be over here diligently working to give future me a detailed and accurate memory of our million hour drive home to Pittsburgh.

It’s 8:58am (central time) and we’re waiting for dippy Henry to check out. The first thing that happened when I woke up around 7 was that I opened Instagram and found out one of the ex-pat vloggers living in Korea that I watch died of leukemia and even though I didn’t know her, I INSTANTLY started to cry. Her name on YouTube is HojuSara (she’s Australian and hoju means Australia in Korean) and she was sooooo full of life and love for Korean culture, spoke Korean fluently, and was one of the first channels I started watching back when I became obsessed with Korea. She and her Korean boyfriend had recently gotten engaged and had gone back to Australia last winter to visit her family when she started feeling off, and that’s basically when it was discovered that she had leukemia.

I’m just sad. I didn’t know her, obviously, but sometimes you can tell when a person is one of the good ones and that was my impression of her.

Ok wow depressing start to a live blog!

9:36am: I hate being this close to Chicago and not stopping!!

9:59am: Another embarrassing Dunkin drive thru experience because Henry is soooooooo bad at relaying our wants and wishes. Chooch and I are mocking him and now Chooch is trying to hide in the backseat. They asked what kind of donut chooch wanted and Chooch was like “any kind” so Henry was yelling, “pick the worst one!” into the window after the girl walked away, and then when she handed Henry the bag, he threw it really hard into the backseat without even looking and it was pretty funny but I guess you had to be there.

Meanwhile, Henry gaslit me and said they didn’t have croissants which is all I wanted and I said oh that’s weird because I’m pretty sure I’ve had one from there and also weird that it’s a bread choice for the breakfast sandwiches but ok, you know everything Henry. So I was pressured into getting avocado toast which held up the drive thru line and meanwhile YES SIR THEY HAVE CROISSANTS so I was crying about that and accused Henry of gaslighting and Chooch piped up from the backseat to tell me I don’t even know what that means which is REAL RICH coming from Gaslighter Jr.

11:07am: Henry brought along all these different Tupperware containers of various trail mix type stuff for car-snacking. I opened one that had granola in it and instantly recoiled as it hit my tongue.

“What is this, from the ’80s?? It tastes like it come from someone’s storm shelter.”

“First of all,” the White Knight started, adjusting his medieval jockstrap. “How many things have you eaten from a storm shelter?”

3:08pm: time changed somewhere back there and now we’re in Toledo for food and wow this place is supremely ugly no offense if you live here but I high key hate it.

3:23pm: WE’RE HERE AND JACKIE BLUE IS PLAYING AND THIS IS MY KIND OF PLACE I LOVE IT.

CHOOCH IS ASKING THE GUY IN THE GIFT SHOP WHERE THE TED NUGENT SIGNED HOT DOG BUN IS. THE REAL MVP.

I made Henry come over to the Ted Bun so I could get take his picture for Alyson and he was a big bitch baby about it because THERE WERE PPL EATING AT A TABLE 10 feet away. God, cry about it. This is literally why people come to Packo’s–for the signed hot dog experience!

I mean, I’m guessing! We totally came just for the Ted Bun! (Well, I did, anyway.)

Chooch: I don’t know who any of these hot dog bun people are because I’m not over the age of 70.

LOL.

Pierogies.

Chooch got a veggie dog with vegan chili and I had slight ordering remorse.

I made Henry order the paprikas dumplings as his side even though that’s not what he wanted lol.

The food was fine but the ambiance was exactly what I had hoped. I love restaurants that look like this, while also offering some kind of road side attraction schtick to reel you in. I’m here for it every single time.

CHERRY STRUDEL BABY.

It was decent! I have Yugoslavian and Austrian heritage though so I grew up eating some of the best apple strudel in the world, HUMBLE BRAG. So most strudel I have at restaurants is still delicious but not like the kind served at a local fire hall baby shower, if you know what I mean.

Also there wasn’t enough of it!

Packo Bathroom Selfie!

Then we bought some shit at the gift shop – Chooch got a pickle pen (apparently Packo’s is famous for their pickles and Henry said they’re even sold at our local Giant Eagles which I wouldn’t know because I probably go to a grocery store maybe 5x a year). I got a magnet, obviously.

<3

On the way out, crybaby Henry saw that chocolate chip cookies were for sale near the bar and he sulked because he wanted them but didn’t want to put $2.50 on the credit card so he came back to the car and cried some more but then Chooch said he had a $10 bill so Henry said, “GIMME IT” and legit snatched it from him and ran back in to get his fucking cookies, so Chooch kept saying, “COOKIE!!!” in a Cookie Monster / caveman voice and it was especially funny when he was saying it as I watched in the rear view mirror as Henry stormed back to the car with cookies in hand, like some fucking war hero.

Anyway, you’re welcome as usual, Henry and Chooch, for having the novel idea to eat there. I always have the best ideas.

5:05pm: Packo’s has a bunch of M.A.S.H. memorabilia because of the Toledo connection I guess – I actually had to ask Henry because I didn’t actively watch that show since I was YOUNG but my dad watched it so I know some stuff, like the basic gist of it and various actors who were on it. This pushed me down the rabbit hole because I was like WASNT ONE OF THEM THE DAD ON PROVIDENCE and Henry was like I DID NOT WATCH THAT but Mike Farrel was the second name he offered up as an answer and I was like THATS IT so I started reading the Providence wiki until I landed on the PICKET FENCES page because holy shit I forgot that was a show!?

I never watched it. Henry said he sort of did whatever that means.

Ugh it’s 6:49pm and we still have an hour to go because we’ve stopped so many times for pee breaks etc. All you’ve missed is shitty Starbucks and my obligatory once-a-road-trip rant about BTS’s mediocrity. I guess I will just post this now because who cares bye.

Aug 152022
 

Yo yo yo. Here I am, Erin-Not-Kelly, coming at you live with some updates from the road. It’s 6:12p currently and we are finally on our way back to Pittsburgh after a weekend full of coasters and cry-babying (I didn’t get enough sleep ok??).

We went to Six Flags Great Adventure yesterday after leaving Morey’s Piers and had our best visit yet – it was actually absurd how good it was. I’ll recap that in full later but just to show you how much of a blast we had marathonning El Toro at the end of the night, here’s what my elbow looked like this morning:

I’m glad it’s just a bruise because I was worried that I actually chipped my elbow bone lol ugh.

We stayed in a Hampton in Horsham (LOLOL) PA which is near Doylestown which is where Anthony Green from Circa Survive lives! I know, you’re really fascinated by that. Anyway though the hotel was actually quite decent.

I wanted to go for a walk while Chooch was showering because I’m in this Workweek Hustle FitBit challenge and since I got late start this morning, I was in last place (gasp!). So we told Chooch we were doing this and Henry also grabbed most of our bags while he was at it since we were going outside. The walk itself was uneventful, but when we got back to the hotel, we ran into Chooch in the lobby, holding a plate of breakfast in one hand, a yogurt stick in his mouth, and his carry-on in his other hand, looking utterly lost. He thought we checked out I guess because he wasn’t paying attention to us as usual. He said he got everything out of the room but Henry was like I WILL BE THE JUDGE OF THAT and went back up. He left his Holiday World Voyage shirt and a brush there, plus Henry said the shower wasn’t even turned all the way off.

“It was like he killed someone and ran,” Henry muttered when he came back down, tossing Chooch’s shirt at his face.

So surly.

The breakfast buffet had little cornbread bars which was a nice surprise. I love cornbread unless it’s bad cornbread. This wasn’t the best but it was MOIST and more like a cornbread cupcake tbh.

Then we left for Hershey Park and I will obviously write about that later DON’T YOU FRET, but I will give you a bigly spoiler and say that it was another U G H experience there – not as bad as last year but meh enough that I will not be going back unless the RMC rumor is true because at this point it will take a RMC to motivate me. I just don’t think the coaster lineup there is worth the hype. Is it just me?! Because it seems like it’s just me. I like ONE COASTER there enough to willingly stand in line for it and it’s not even one of the ones all the enthusiasts circle-jerk around (Great Bear, if you’re wondering).

We did go to the Hershey Chocolate Experience thing afterward though to get some gifts for Blake since he checked in on our cats three times in the last month-ish. Chooch and I did the Chocolate ride while Henry shopped. This ride has better ops than any ride in the actual park, IMO.

And now we’re on our way home. I am so tired!! I think being an Old Person is finally starting to affect me. I woke up with a headache Sunday and today.

(Lol Henry just turned up the radio because Saturday Drip – NCT Dream came on and that is his BOP.)

We just stopped at a rest area with a 7-Eleven and it was the most chaotic we’ve been as a family unit in quite some time. We kept slamming into each other and openly bickering and then I got hit with a wave of drowsiness so great that it made me crash into a display of sunglasses (only one fell off thank god) and then when the cashier asked Henry if he wanted a bag, he said NOOOOOOOoooooooo like she tried to hand him herpes and I appreciate his environmental love even if it was performative but the way he said that really bugged me so I spat, “Why did you say it like that??”

“I can say it however I want,” he shout back with a haughtiness that didn’t sit well with me AT ALL and the cashier CHUCKLED so now she can get fucked too.

Now Chooch, he is still pouting because Starbucks was closing right when we got there, is doubly-pouting because he wishes he had got a hoodie in Wildwood – this after just bitching because he can’t feel the a/c in the backseat – and it reminded me that I got a Wildwood sweatshirt so now I’m wearing it.

“Wow you’re so cool,” Chooch mumbled. Lololol.

Buying this yesterday was a whole ass experience. I don’t feel like getting into it right now though.

I don’t know why this trip feels so much more exhausting than others since we we’ve only been gone since Friday night but when I say I am wiped out, I truly mean it. Saturday and Sunday were both exceptionally long & action-packed days. Good god.

But now we only have 90 more minutes until hooooooome!

Aug 122022
 

Yo yo yo we’re currently en route to Wildwood and I’m not doing a TRADITIONAL LIVEBLOG but here are some PICTURES.

Chooch has been into reading again ever since Mexico (thank you to his new friends for inspiring him to read again! He’s currently reading Bullet Train (Bad Bunny is evidently in the movie and Chooch’s “Mexico Squad” are obsessed with him so I assume this is what instigated his desire to read the book?) and is having such a good time with it that’s he’s intermittently cracking up in the backseat and has already rated it 5 stars on Goodreads even though he’s only 1/3 done.

Meanwhile I’m reading this which is blah:

Stopped at the same rest area in Bedford where we ran into Bridget last fall!

There’s a cool wall of Turnpike artifacts that I never bothered to look at until today.

I thought they were CHEERSing their Starbucks but I dunno what was actually happening.

Also it annoys me that anytime Chooch GRUDGINGLY lets me have a sip of his drinks, he immediately gropes for a napkin to wipe off the lid. Dude, I’m your MOTHER?!

We are currently driving thru the stinkiest stretch of Pennsylvania, holy fucking shit.

At another rest stop. This guy is stocking the pastry shelf and HIS GIRLFRIEND JACKED HER FINGER UP TODAY REAL GOOD BUT SHE WON’T GO TO THE DOCTOR.

Omg another rest stop!

I dunno why this is so funny to me but Chooch obv. does not agree.

Trying to get a picture of the super moon that’s been evading him all night.

We’ll be at our hotel in Somewhere, NJ in about 20 minutes (11pm) and then tomorrow we’ll have another hour to drive before WILDWOOD so I am signing off now byeeee.

Jul 292022
 

Good morn’. It’s 9:00am and we’ve departed for our latest weekend adventure. It feels like we left the house an hour ago but we got tied up in a long Dunkin drive thru line and are currently only in Cranberry. Lame.

I convinced Henry to take a slightly longer route to our destination, which will take us through NY instead of across the entire length of Pennsylvania. I’m so sick of making that same drive over and over. I did have an ulterior motive though – this route takes us through Buffalo and I want vegan füdz for lunch.

I brought this book along for the ride. I can go either way with Riley Sager (Henry hates his books) so we’ll see where we land with this one. You care.

I just held the door open for someone at GetGo and as I was making a gloating face to Henry, I almost crashed into the guy I held the door open for so now Henry is clowning me.

Henry got a Krispy Kreme at Get Go and I took a small bite because I don’t often have these things. I think they’re fine but I still don’t understand why people hyperventilate over them. I remember when my hometown got its first location and my family, who had grown to love them thanks to all the car show road trips they went on without me, the Family Pariah, went fucking nuts. Mostly my dad, who was obsessed with these breakfast sweets that are neither crispy nor creamy. This was back when my dad and I hated each other so I think I probably intentionally went into it being a bitter Betty, pre-hating them because I refused to agree with my dad on anything then lol oh teenage Erin. You were a fucking delight.

11:06am: We’re almost in NY! Lake Erie has been on our left for quite some time. I have been quietly reading my book like a precious Princess while Henry houses palmfuls of trail mix.

Made the mistake of asking Henry why gas prices vary by state and now he’s droning on about taxes, totally ruining Taemin’s “IDEA” which is currently playing, so I said “I’m bored now” as I looked longingly out the window.

“Always nice talking to you,” he sighed.

11:40am: a gaggle of Hell’s Angels just puttered past us and I was tempted to flip them off to see if Henry would defend me once we pull into the next rest stop and see them waiting for us. He asked me to please not. Now we’re talking about who kills more people: them or the Pagans and Henry said probably them because they’re “more nationwide.” I wonder if he knows that from when he was studying them to pass the admission test that he ultimately failed because he has NARC written all over him.

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“Their leader just died,” he said (why does he know this?!).

“Was he an out of shape slob like the ones that drove past?”

“Well no. He was very skinny because he had cancer.”

That killed the convo.

12:03pm: at my fave rest stop in New York.

He was made because I yelled HENRY just so I could take this lol. Some kid stood at the glass and got a passing by truck to beep and I cried I WANT TO DO IT TOO but Henry muttered “come on.”

LEAVING THE REST AREA AND SPOTTED THE HELLS ANGELS. this was the best shot I could get because Henry didn’t want to get killed.

1:24pm: Just left Sunshine Vegan!

Ok, I loved it. Black-owned vegan establishments just do it better. That’s facts. First of all, we walked in and the owner’s son joyfully greeted us with the announcement that it was his moms birthday and I was like Lord what’s it like to have a kid who cares about your bday?? It was just such a welcoming atmosphere.

I got a po’boy (I’m obsessed with vegan shrimp done right and this was it), Henry got some type of veggie sub (he thought it was a burger lol), and we got a carrot “tuna” salad dip to share. It was all so delicious and I didn’t feel like shit afterward.

And oh my LORD whatever that green sauce is, I wanted to lick every runaway drop off the plate.

This dog’s name is Dinero and he hated Henry! Yessss.

2:14pm: Made Henry detour to some village called OAKFIELD for donuts at some okay donuterie called Sweet Ally’s. I actually couldn’t finish my fruity pebble donut and gave it to Henry but the few bites I had were ok. Nothing to write home about except I guess that is what I’m technically doing??

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The best part was this small park behind the donut place that gave walking prompts!! I won at it.

Actually the highlight of this was when Henry was struggling to get SIRI to understand that he needed directions to Sweet Ally’s. She had us going to Utah at one part. I was laughing so hard and he legit yelled at me which made laugh harder.

3:22pm: Stopped in Seabreeze Park land to do some Lake Ontario stuff!

The public restroom here was like a prison cell!

4:03pm: Back in the car. Here are some pictures from our LAKE ADVENTURE which wasn’t much of an adventure but it was still nice to get out of the car and sit on a large rock above splashing lake waves while pretending it was the ocean.

Ok, stay predominating, preDon’s.

Anyway, Henry and I are actually really enjoying each other’s company amazingly even though I did at one point snip: Why can’t you just do what I want and keep your mouth shut about it?” He was like WOW but then proceeded to do what I want hahaha.

Also!! I asked him if he got me something for my bday (tomorrow!!) and he said but that he can’t give it to me until Chooch is back and if that’s my present…I mean, yay! But also, can I have STUFF too? I’m a very STUFF-centric bitch.

6:39pm: We’re at Eddie’s in Sylvan Beach for dinner and regardless of how the food ends up being, this restaurant is MY STYLE. It got mediocre reviews on Yelp for being DATED and LIVING IN THE PAST and NO RENOVATIONS SINCE THE 60s which is how I knew it was the right choice.

That vinyl / carpet combo!

Also, our waitress’s name is Hannah and of course it is because she looks like every Hannah over ever known. (She is very nice.)

News flash: Henry chose PEPPERCORN as the dressing for his salad. I have never known him to select this?!

And then it looked like bleu cheese and he said no it’s peppercorn so I was like HOW DO U KNOW ITS PEPPERCORN and he said because he could taste the peppercorns?! What do they taste like?! Peppery corns?!

Before we ate, we bought some tickets because GALAXI was running this time! Sorry Chooch but we snagged a coaster credit that you don’t have. (Although, he got a country credit that I don’t have so I think he wins this round lol.)

I thought Henry was holding his nose because he too was bothered by the STRONG currents of B.O. being tossed around on this carnival coaster but I guess he just had an itch. It was a really strong stench. Anyway, we thought this was going to be tough and janky but it was surprisingly pleasant! I was a fan.

Couldn’t pass this up! Did it get worse than last year somehow? It just felt like we were mostly in the dark and the “scares” were barely lit. Oh well, I only ride it for that nostalgic aroma of must and grease, and the sound of the pretzel cars turning corners. It’s a vibe.

After eating, I demanded that we walk around some more to digest. Because of all this LOLLYGAGGING, our ETA in Nashua is now 12:18am lolololol.

Today is just “casual driving day” or as Henry calls it “Never Gonna Get There” day lol.

I can’t believe I got milquetoast Henry to do this.

The ride operator was oiling the track!

“I bet he had to sign waivers for that,” I said.

“I bet he didn’t,” Henry said in his I KNOW THINGS tone.

Same day, different lake. This is Lake Oneida! I fell in love with Sylvan Beach when we were visited last September and that love is still going strong. It is such a cute little vacation town! I’m already pining for it.

Anyway, when we left, Henry made me drive for almost TWO HOURS. Ok, 90 minutes. But that was annoying because he always sleeps when I drive so I’m basically driving alone. And I wanted to read my book some more but now it’s 9:23 and dark so thanks Hank.

Well, I’m going to post this now since it’s going to essentially be tomorrow when we check into our hotel. I’ll update if anything noteworthy happens!!

11:50pm: Still in the car as expected but I just realized who our waitress reminded me of:

HOLLY J from DeGrassi, also can a Look be any more early-2000s?!

1:00am: we’re here. Good fucking night.

Jul 102022
 

2:39AM: A trio of bickering and we haven’t even pulled out of the driveway yet! Chooch almost left without his phone charger and now I’m the bad guy for asking him if he has it, I guess.

Also, Henry cleaned my glasses for me and it’s like looking out of, well, glass. Is this how it was always supposed to be?!

3:07am: been in the check-in line for 3 minutes and two people have asked me questions so far as if I know anything?!

3:18am: I know this is going to shock everyone but we’ve been here for 20 minutes and the American Airlines check in counter has been empty. But 6 of them are now slowly walking out and we’re all like “shut up” when one of them called out good mornings all sing-songily. It’s 3:00am gtfo.

3:56am: At the gate. Henry and I got PARENT PASSES to come all the way with him – I’m sure he is SO happy about this considering he sniped, “you’re so embarrassing” 8x in the last 10 minutes.

I almost took this with the flash on so that probably would have really sent him over the edge lololol.

4:45am: Now we have Dunkin’ Donuts and Henry is waiting in line somewhere else to get Chooch to big boy food. “I’m excited for this ‘home style breakfast.'”

Henry, bearer of bad news, just strutted over to tell Chooch that they don’t have pancakes today and he took the liberty of substituting it with toast. Chooch is not happy about this. Henry walked away and Chooch said, “asshole” in a super conversational tone and I don’t know why, probably because of the whole “2 hours of sleep” thing, but I can’t stop laughing.

Oh yeah! Since we couldn’t send Doll to Mexico with Chooch, we took pictures of her to put in his suitcase as a surprise:

5:15am: There is another CIEE kid here!!! We wanted Chooch to say hi and he said “I’ll say in Mexico.” WOW LOL. Now he’s trying to hide his shirt and avoid her but her dad looked right at him so we’ll see how this plays out.

5:52am: Well, he’s all boarded. Henry said he wished he took a picture of us hugging because it was so awkward considering I usually always slap or flick him to show affection. I’m crying, guys. This sucks.

Henry’s trying to flex his airplane knowledge. “They took the chocks out so the plane should be moving soon.”

6:21am: Just watched the plane take off. I’m a mess.

This is Henry’s version of “sad” I guess.

6:33am: Whelp. Chooch’s plane had to land because the lady behind him passed out and they’re doing CPR so now we’re going back to the gate. We had JUST gotten off the shuttle too and managed to jump back on before the doors closed because otherwise I think we would have had to go through security again and I don’t think our Gate Passes would have still worked since his flight had technically departed.

6:55am: lady has been brought off on stretcher. They’re still doing CPR. :/

While we’re killing time waiting for takeoff part 2, here’s a picture of Chooch’s Bon Voyage dinner, which I had hoped would be at a decent restaurant but when we left it up to him, he just kept suggesting Applebees because of that stupid country song that I hate and I was really trying to internalize my dissatisfaction with this choice since it was for HIS Bon voyage dinner not mine, but then he looked at the menu and realized that there is nothing for us to eat there so then he settled for take out from Moonlit Burgers because they have impossible burgers.

He was actually SO NICE all day yesterday and even treated us like human beings. It was almost as if he realized he was leaving for a month and might miss us.

7:16am: now everyone is getting off the plane.

(Everyone is saying that the lady had a heart attack.)

LOOK WHO’S BACK.

I just asked him if it was scary and he said, “no. I’m a sociopath.” And then cracked up. Wow.

8:13am: REBOARDING. I GET TO RE-CRY TOO I GUESS.

P.S. Apparently that other CIEE kid is going somewhere else not Merida because Henry just talked to chooch’s chaperone and she didn’t mention any other kids that she will be waiting for??!!

8:56am: Getting ready for takeoff part 2. *fingers crossed* He’s going to be cutting it super close for his connecting flight. Went from a 3-hour layover to basically having about 30 minutes to get to the gate, hopefully his chaperone is actually there. I hate this so much.

9:08am: He’s in the air. Attempting to leave the airport for the second time today.

9:22am:

Outside! I missed you!

10:24am: Went home for a second, consoled the cats after they did a Human Count and realized Chooch was missing, tossed some peanuts to Mr. Gray Guy, and then we came back out to Allegro’s to get some of their morning buns because I am honestly not going to be able to sit still and relax until I know that Chooch has made his connecting flight and is safe in Merida this day is so stressful. How will I ever send him off to college?!!!

Meanwhile, I imagine Chooch is on the plane, watching Better Call Saul, and giving zero fucks about anything because that kid does not know anxiety.

Dude this was good and sort of helped make me feel better…until it made me sick because I ate the whole damn thing ugh.

11:40pm: OK he landed at 12:20 and is off the plane. His CIEE chaperone is not there like she said she would be because why should anything go according to plan, but his gate is at least in the same terminal so he just has to get there. I might puke up that orange roll.

11:46am: Update from Chooch – “you guys are so annoying. I’m trying to walk.” Wow sorry for worrying.

12:38pm: He should be taking off soon! I’m tracking his flight because I’m Stalker Mom. I’m going to go live with this post now but will for sure update when he lands in Merida. Thank you for taking this virtual journey with me lol!

2:11pm: I keep obsessively refreshing the flight tracker. He has like 40 minutes. Since I last left you, I made progress on getting Mr. Gray Guy (a squirrel) to love me and I took a whole ass 30 minute nap, who even am I? A nap?! I mean, I guess I’ve been awake since 2:15AM.

Earlier today Henry was like, “we should have just driven him to Miami for that flight,” and after approx. 1.3 seconds of letting this spin cycle thru my empty mind like a ratty dryer sheet, I cried, “Why didn’t we??!!” I mean, Henry and I weren’t even traveling today but it was just reminder after the next of why I hate flying so much. It’s the whole fucking process for me. TSA especially. I fucking hate it. Travelers are already so stressed and harried and tired but then they gotta contend with these motherfuckers whose job prerequisite is SCHOOL BULLY.

Pittsburgh TSA sucks.

3:13pm: OK he’s there! I only know because of the stalking I’ve been doing not because he had the decency to text to me. He did, however, texted Henry: where’s my immigration form because of fucking course sonny boy didn’t listen to a word we told him the whole 6 hours we were in the airport together this morning but mmm ok.

Anyway, I’ll probably end this here. I’m ok now that he’s there and I will probably continue to be OK until we have to do this all over again in reverse on August 6th god help me.

ETA: I can’t believe I forgot these pertinent tidbits (though I have a vague recollection of typing them so they probably didn’t save because WordPress is trash):

  • the reason everyone had to get off the plane was because it had done a “hard landing” meaning that it made an emergency landing with nearly a full tank which is apparently not great for the plane and can cause stress so it needed to be inspected. The American Airlines guy at the gate kept us pretty well-informed about this which I appreciated but this part freaked me out: the maintenance crew is BASED IN DALLAS so they were essentially walking the Pittsburgh team through the inspection over the phone?!?!
  • Before all the passengers got off the plane, the lady who had the heart attack was wheeled off on a stretcher. They had to bring her off into the gate and then take her onto an elevator to get her back out onto the tarmac where the ambulance was. We saw them doing CPR still as they put her in the ambulance, and at this point it had been at least a half an hour since Chooch had texted me to say that they landed.
  • After the incident happened on the plane, one of the passengers gave her CPR. That passenger was standing near us when everyone got off the plane and people were going up to her and thanking her for helping. One guy was super choked up when he thanked her so I can only imagine how traumatic it must have been for everyone who witnessed it. I asked Chooch if it was upsetting and he said, “No not really but I’m a sociopath” because that’s what I always call him because his ambivalence is shocking at times.
  • Henry went to Brueggers while we were waiting for the plane to be inspected and the co-pilot was in there telling everyone what happened. He said it was literally right during take off and he knew it was bad because normally they’re not allowed to make emergency landings until they’re above a certain altitude but they were given the all-clear because “a passenger wasn’t breathing.” I literally cannot even imagine.
  • I got to talk to Chooch for a millisecond tonight after he got to his homestay. He told me, “I dunno sure I’m tired bye” whatever that means. We still don’t even know he was able to get his luggage because that apparently isn’t an important enough question for him to answer.
  • I legit can’t stop thinking about that lady and I wasn’t even on the plane. I really hope that she’s ok. :(