Thursday, January 15, 2009

Road trip wrap-up.

Posted by revolutionaire. at 9:41 AM
I've been back on flat, peninsular land for three days now and things haven't been that awesome. Including my mood.

American Idol started. But even that didn't shake the funk off me.

Ryan talked to me about his 1/2 marathon training progress and inadvertently got me revved up for the gym. I'm so proud of him for working toward this goal of his. When he does run his 1/2 marathon (which, he will), I'm going to be on the sidelines with a bunch of cute cheerleaders in mini-skirts chanting "Ryan, Ryan, he's our man, if he can't do it, no one can!"

Being that I figured I needed to blow off some steam, I made all plans to go after work yesterday. I even had to buy clothes for it, and I did. And I went, and it was exhilarating. So much, in fact, that I'm going again today. I miss the gym. I know that much.

Anyway, Florida's not being nice to me since I've returned. So to stick it to the Man (the Man, being Florida), I'm going to tell stories about my recent road trip with Patrick.

I took last Friday off, he called me in the morning, I packed up a weekend's worth of stuff and my parents took me to meet him in Gainesville.

I call it a road trip because it was one for me, but for Patrick is was just going home to Padre Island. He's stationed in Corpus Christi now, for training in P3s. I'm happy about that; I'd rather him fly P3s than jets. But that's for another entry.

We drove to Pensacola, arrived in time for dinner at Carrabba's. There I met six people I hadn't met before and did a fine job getting to know all of them. I drank two delicious glasses of Pino Grigio with with my Chicken Brian, then continued the festivities at Loren and Ang's house with the ever so delicious sweet tea vodka Loren served up. Following dinner and post dinner drinks, Trevor, Nick, Patrick, and myself went back to Trevor & Nick's apartment and played Guitar Hero until our fingers fell off.

The next morning-ish, Trevor, Patrick, and myself (after way too much deliberation) went to IHOP during a chilling rain for some pre-driving breakfast. It was thoroughly delicious. When we got back to the house we loaded up Diamond and left.

We were in Alabama within minutes. And into Mississippi in a flash as well, but when we hit Louisiana our time started ticking away. Louisiana, while I'd never driven through it before, seemed like the longest state ever. It felt something like driving through Georgia on I-75. It never ended.

Then we hit the Texas border and Patrick let me know we still had something like another six hours to go. . .

I managed to make it all the way through Houston without falling asleep, but couldn't hold out for Padre Island. I think I fell asleep somewhere before Corpus Christi. I don't know. I do remember jerked my eyes open at one point, glancing over at Patrick to see if he'd noticed only to have him say "ya fallin' asleep over there?" My idiot answer was, "no, just resting for a bit." Within minutes of saying that, I was out cold.

(by the way, I posted pictures of this road trip on my facebook and my myspace. If you like pictures, you can check those out.)

We arrived at Patrick's apartment at about 1230 AM I believe. We were both ready to flop, but I couldn't. I sat on the love seat while he laid on the couch and we stared at SNL until our eyes dried out (or at least mine did). I tinkered with the internet (I love the flexibility of wireless internet with a laptop) and then finally surrendered to his plush and designer king-sized bed (while, as you already know, fair readers, he slept on the couch).

Sunday was my only full day there. Oddly enough I was the last one awake, even after Patrick forewarned me he was going to be sleeping in. I got a quick shower and then chatted it up with Thomas (his housemate) before Patrick and I left to meet Shaun Kersey and his brother (Casey) for lunch at this little place called Blackbeard's.

After Blackbeard's, Patrick and I went to the Texas State Aquarium and took a million bajillion pictures. I love aquariums. That's obviously where the jelly fish picture comes from. It's my favorite from the whole weekend.

After the aquarium he took me to the the base and we shopped at the Comsy and the NEX. I thought it was so awesome. I'd never really been on a Military Base before -- excluding the abandoned one my dad worked on (For Devens). I was excited over the simplist things.

For instance, Patrick has to wear his flight suit to check back in from taking leave. I was tickled pink that I got to see him wearing his flight suit.

After he checked in, he, Thomas, and myself went to dinner at La Playa. It's this great (great is an understatement) Mexican restaurant in Corpus. They start you off with unlimited chips and salsa -- my eyebrows were sweating and I'd drank six glasses of water before my meal even came. I had delicious chicken fajita enchiladas with rice, refried beans and a little salad. It was mind-blowingly fantastic.

Then we went to see The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and you'll hate me for saying this, but I stopped feeling that movie about the time he turned "60." The movies was good, actually . . . it was epic. But it was also epicly long and I didn't enjoy that aspect of it.

After the movie we went back the apartment and hung out some. It was late so we all went to be shortly after. The next morning (Monday), I woke up all alone in the apartment. Patrick and been in the room to put Diamond in her crate and to get his flight suit I guess. When I realized no one was there, I called Patrick to touch base (I knew he had to go into work), got a shower, took Diamond for a walk, walked to the surf shop up the street and to the CVS and then went back to the apartment to make sure my stuff was ready to go.

Patrick came back, picked me up (in his flight suit!!! weeeeeee!) and took me to the airport. It was a quick and sad drive. I hate leaving.

But the time I got to spend with him was so priceless. He's my best friend, and probably one of the most underrated. This year will mark the tenth that we've been in each others' lives and taking this trip together, in hindsight, is a sort of tribute to that.

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