Thursday, November 15, 2007

The good, the bad and the ugly

Well, we've been to the other side of the country and back. In some ways, it felt like we went halfway around the world, ending up in another culture and almost another language! We went to Kentucky so Rick could attend some high-tech horse vet meetings in Lexington, "the northern-most city of the South." We took a little extra time to do some sightseeing in the area, and then stopped in Nebraska on our way home to see family.

The Good. It was BEAUTIFUL in Bluegrass Country. Plenty of autumn color; unique dry-set stone fences; historic architecture; vast, manicured horse farms without compare. In fact, there are horses EVERYWHERE there, real and decorative -- quite a place to be for someone who has been "horse crazy" since birth! I had been to Kentucky once as a child and visited some of the farms, including the one where Man O'War was buried. Now, he and other equine stars are stabled, buried and/or memorialized at the Kentucky Horse Park, the home of the International Museum of the Horse. It would have been nice to have several more days to see the sights, especially those connected to Rick's family tree, which goes back to Daniel Boone.
It was also good to see family. I grew up with tons of cousins, and even though I didn't get to see them that often, they were FAMILY. Brian only has four cousins, all older, three of whom live outside of Lincoln. He had great fun playing with them. We also "walked down memory lane," driving by the home Rick grew up in, getting donuts at a favorite old bakery and visiting our alma mater, where Rick's dad taught biology until his death. Rick's sister made me a German Chocolate Cake (from scratch, the ONLY kind worth the calories) for my birthday, and we celebrated Christmas early.
The Bad. Before we left on our trip, Brian came down with a bad cold; do you know how much fun it is to travel with a sick, cranky kid? (I caught it one day into our trip.) Still, I got some knitting done on the eastbound plane. After a long day of travel, we fell into bed at an interim hotel for the night, but didn't get much sleep because of Brian's coughing. The next morning we packed up to continue the drive to Lexington. It was then that I discovered I had left my knitting bag ON THE PLANE! I was disbelieving>frantic>desperate>heartsick. Being a man and wanting to "fix it," Rick was all for taking me to the nearby Wal-Mart Supercenter to replace everything, not understanding that 9mm Addi Turbos and eight ounces of homespun cannot be satisfactorily replaced by what Wally-World carries. I called Northwest's baggage claims number only to hear that carry-on items are not cataloged or stored. I called the airport baggage claims center numerous times over the next several days, but my bag was never turned in. The thought of my one-of-a-kind gift-in-progress thrown in the trash somewhere was agonizing....

The Ugly. I took my laptop along to keep up with emails and all the blogs I enjoy visiting, but the only free internet I found on the entire trip was at the cheap hotel we stayed in the first night. NONE of the three airports in which we changed planes had free internet, nor did the fancy-shmancy Marriott resort we stayed in for Rick's meetings. What a rip-off for a high-end hotel to charge $12.95/day for internet access! I was not a happy customer -- of Marriott OR those airports!

You're right, Dorothy; there's no place like home. It's great to be back to our own bed, our regular routine, our critters, Oregon weather, and ready internet access. I really missed being able to keep up with all the news and nonsense on others' blogs, and be in easy email contact with all my long-distance friends. Now if I can just keep my head above water in the coming weeks of hectic holiday happenings!

That's it for now from . . .

11 comments:

Tammy said...

Bummer on losing your knitting bag. I guess a good idea would be to tuck a slip of paper with your name and address in it or something. There are still good souls who would probably return it if they knew where to. I love that rock fence in the one picture. It looks pretty dry there. I wonder if they are having drought? I've always wanted to go to 'Bluegrass' Country and I don't live that far away!
Good to have you back.
Tammy

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Yes, I should have had ID in that bag, although things that appear valuable are turned into the airport's baggage claim/lost and found. Who knows what happened to it....

That top photo shows a brown field, but I think that was the only one we saw; all the others were lush and green. They had a severe drought this summer, but had a lot of rain this fall. We were told that the odd weather was why there was still fall color when we were there in November. You really should go; it was great!

Kathy L. said...

I remember Kentucky as wonderfully green every time I was there. Did you ever find out where they buried Barbaro?

Jamie said...

I am so sorry to hear about your knitting loss! I can just imagine how upsetting that must have been. I would have been insane for, well, I'd probably still be twitching. ;)

Love the photos of the horses. I've always loved them, never had them.

Hope you're all feeling better!

Karen Valley said...

I'd much rather lose clothes than handspun so totally sympathize. Was interesting to hear you have familial ties to the Boone family as my daughter through her dad also goes back to Daniel's brother.

Small world isn't it.

shepherdchik said...

Oh bummer. I was in Omaha this past week. Look how close we came to meeting in real life!

Sharon said...

We have the wonderful ability to over time left the bad and ugly fade and treasure the good. Brian won't remember his hacking miserable cold, but he will remember romping with his cousins. Family is so important - it's the only thing we can't buy or change. I understand the depth of your loss though. I left my daughter's silver infant spoon on the plane and suffered the same outcome. I still feel it to this day. Welcome home - Dorothy was right, of course.

~~Sittin.n.Spinnin said...

It is interesting to see a picture of the statue of Secretariat, I once worked with a great grandson of his in Georgia at a two year old training facility. He was a gorgeous animal! I have worked with many race horses, but he was my favorite. Although (or because?) I love horses, I have no desire to see them race or even to see *where* they race. Having been so close to the industry, I saw things that I did not agree with and decided I didnt want any part of it any more.
Glad to know you're home and safe, and healthy? You are over your cold?

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Karen, Rick's family goes back to Daniel Boone's sister! I wonder if there were a lot of siblings. Me, I'm a product of relatively recent European imports, but I still enjoy American history.

Becca, we fly in and out of Omaha! Shoot!

And I totally agree with you on the racing industry. There's no way my husband could be a track vet because of the things that go on there. But there are a lot of nice thoroughbreds to go on to other disciplines after track training/racing, and have a good life. That's the upside. :-)

Tina T-P said...

Oh, darn - don't you just feel like your knitting bag felt like the Velveteen Rabbit? Maybe someone found it and will make something lovely with your wool.

Glad to see you back - I was about to email & see it you were OK. T.

Jennifer Johnson said...

I'm just sick about your knitting. I hope whoever finds it treasures it. Rich and I have dreamed of a trip to Kentucky, thanks for sharing the photos.