A closed Walmart.
This weekend, I celebrated being back home in Brooklyn after a few days in my home state of Pennsylvania. These were some of the least restful vacation days, but I got lots of quality time with family.
Went to dinner with my friend Amanda at Corkbuzz. We had a wine flight of rosés to acknowledge the coming end of summer. My favorite was the Bisson Portofino Ciliegiolo ’12 (Liguria). The food was hit or miss unfortunately–and pricey.
Got a much-needed haircut here and afterward, a much-much-needed passport photo which, while acceptable, I will not be posting anywhere.
Other than the fact that I got my nails done and hate the color, it was a good weekend.
What did you do?
On Monday, once it was clear that my father was doing well post-procedure and would be released the next day, my mother made the trip north to Scranton while I stayed behind to wait for Dad’s discharge. Her departure ensured that I got to watch The Bachelorette in the hotel.
On Tuesday, Dad was beyond eager to get home. After six days in a narrow hospital bed, being awakened at all hours for checks of his vital signs and numerous needle sticks, who could blame him? Dad desperately wanted to put on his own clothes and escape, but he still had a heart monitor on him and an IV port for medication delivery. While we waited for final orders, I used a lime popsicle to get him to behave and sit still.
Are all men children for life?
When he got sprung from
jail the hospital, we made a break for it.
Together we drove up the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Mom’s Cadillac. Traveling by car with Dad is better than driving with my mother (sorry, Mom). He lets me control the radio and doesn’t criticize my driving.
In fact, he typically falls asleep for approximately 49% of any car trip. It’s only weird when he raises an arm and points zombie-like mid-snooze. Given how much he uses his hands when awake and talking, this should not have surprised me. Dad blames being Polish for that (and lots of other things).
We spent most of the drive tuned into XM-Sirius 90s’ station. Dad didn’t know TLC’s No Scrubs when it came on, but I noticed him tapping his toes to the music and took that as an invitation to give him the history of Chilli, T-Boz and most importantly, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, as well as to explain the concept of a ‘scrub.’
Dad is now fully on-board with the fact that women don’t want or need no scrubs. A scrub would get no love from him should I accidentally date one.
Telling Dad that Left Eye was the one who burned down Andre Rison‘s mansion really put the whole story into focus. He seemed appropriately sad when I told him that Left Eye died in a car accident in Central America.
I was about to tell him about T-Boz’s battle with sickle-cell anemia and Chilli’s history with Usher, but then Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch’s Good Vibrations came on and I had to keep up.
Dad had never made the connection between the actor he likes, Mark Wahlberg, and the dude who “sang” with a funky bunch and lifted cinder blocks on a barbell.
I didn’t bring up the wonderful Calvin Klein campaign. There are limits to the things I will discuss with my father. I did, however instruct Dad never to call Mr. Wahlberg “Marky Mark” should he ever meet the actor. Can’t have Dad’s handsome face getting punched.
After passing through the Lehigh Valley tunnel, we hit construction-related traffic. Neither of us were bothered. We had great tunes and even better conversation to help us pass the time.
I intend to drive my father around again when I’m back in Scranton in a few weeks. We haven’t yet exhausted the possibilities of 90s on 9, but there’s still the 80s station.
Some of the series’ biggest names will make the trip including the actors who play Jim and Pam, John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer, and of course Rainn Wilson, the frequent troublemaker Dwight Schrute.
So far there are no signs that Steve Carell, who played Michael Scott through Season 7, will attend.
Andy Bernard aka Ed Helms should make the trip–after all, Scranton is only two hours’ drive from his alma mater and mine, Cornell.
The element I find coolest though is ticket prices: they top out at $21. Isn’t that wonderful? There are also free events including a come one, come all parade. Something for every Office fan.
Maybe I should make the trip!
There’s a point on Route 46 East in New Jersey where you hit the top of a small hill and get your first glimpse of the New York City skyline.
Every single time, I’m flooded with emotion.
Later, the view meant that I was returning home after a visit to my family in Scranton.
For ten years, while I lived in DC, I didn’t see that view very often. Which is probably why that glimpse of skyline still feels like a gift a year and a half after making my return.
The leaving made the return sweeter.
Mom and Dad love me.
Chocolates from a hometown candy company, Gertrude Hawk. Delicious!
This is not a sponsored post, unless my parents sending me candy counts. Nope.
Butterscotch pudding at Puddin’. Or maybe the Caramel Macchiato. Or both!
A steak from Peter Luger. I’m so ashamed that I have been living nearby for this long without dining there. In my defense, the one time I tried (2pm on a weekend) it was packed.
More of this pizza. I’ll be begging Mom and Dad for a delivery from Scranton soon.
What are you hungry for?
Are you into yoga? I have taken classes here and there, but nothing serious. Usually whatever my gym offers versus a more specialized studio.
A friend from high school, Nicole Scavo-Powell, found Astanga yoga while caring for her terminally ill father and became very serious about it, eventually becoming certified to teach.
When Nicole and reconnected on Facebook, I saw her pictures and videos and found them incredibly inspiring.
Nicole teaches in Scranton including at Mission Yoga, and also teaches privately.
Whenever I go home to the Scranton area, going for pizza is high on my To Do list.
Not just any pizza will do. And I definitely don’t call for Domino’s or Pizza Hut. Sacrilege.
It was so satisfying. Great, familiar pizza shared with a friend I have known since we were five years old.
Have you ever tried this style of pizza?