Wabash, Far Away

Wabash, Indiana was the first electrically lighted city in the world. There is an unusual fun fact to know and tell. It is also the county seat of Wabash County, Indiana, and, coincidentally, the Wabash River runs right through Wabash. Shocking, I know. Wabash is about an hour from FW and is, surprisingly, worth the drive.

Wabash has entertainment (music, museum, and theater), food (see below), and great architecture shown in the courthouse, downtown churches, and its downtown theater.

Wabash is also the home of the Charley Creek Inn and the restaurant Twenty.

Twenty is located in the lobby of the Inn. I had the occasion to dine at Twenty with eight colleagues (an awesome group of interesting and fun professionals). There were steaks, lamb, and even a vegetarian dish around the table and dessert was great! It is charming, the food is tasty, and the 1920’s era theme is fun. It is a great spot for a family dinner, birthday party, or a night out. It is also just down the way from The Honeywell Center, so, you can grab a nice dinner before a show.

Wabash is a quaint little spot worth seeing. Pretty.

Take a peek at a few scenes from scenic Wabash while listening to the Indiana state song, On the Banks of the Wabash, Far Away. Enjoy.

Beautifully Bleak, Part V

I do not believe it is over. We are eight days away from the Spring Equinox and we have not had a significant snow or ice event in FW. People are saying that winter is over, they are draining the gasoline from their snow blowers, and putting away their parkas. I, well, I am not so sure. I am thinking more like George Clooney’s character Billy Tyne in the Perfect Storm, “she’s not going to let us out”. I just don’t believe winter is really over.

I will not be surprised if there is an Easter ice storm or an April blizzard. I apologize for being a negative Nellie, but often when something seems too good to be true, it is. However, in the meantime, I will enjoy the sixty degree walks, the sunshine, and nice break from tights and leggings.

Here’s to hoping that winter is really finished with us . . .

The City

My favorite thing about visiting big cities is to walk around early in the morning (before rush hour starts) before the city wakes up. I have had the pleasure of doing this in cities all around the world, from Seattle to Hong Kong. Big cities have personalities, as though they are alive. Everything and everyone is so close together and there are so many people, the city seems to have an energy all its own. In sprawling small/mid-sized towns this energy seems to get lost in strip malls and four-lane highways.

In my opinion, the best city for a morning walk in New York (“The City”).

I love The City despite the fact that I am a confirmed small/mid-sized town kind of girl.

Morning in The City is quiet (by city standards). The only noise is light traffic – taxis headed to the airport for early departures, restaurant and business deliveries being made before the day starts, runners passing by, and the hum of the subway as it rumbles underground. The City’s morning smell is a surprisingly pleasant blend of industrial and gross meets breakfast and the Halal trucks preparing for the lunch crowd. There is nothing like the smell of meat cooking early in the morning. Sometimes you can see the sky, a quiet blue that looks like it is being pierced by the towering buildings, and other times the fog and/or clouds appear like a fluffy blanket resting atop the skyline. It can be lonely and cold or warm and limitless.

The other wonderful thing about a morning walk in the city is that it is as though I have the city all to myself, to photograph, to admire, to wince at, and to discover. I know, the discover part sounds cheesy, but in The City there is always a new restaurant, coffee shop, store, or shop that you have never seen before. So, my need for new and interesting food experiences is more than accommodated in The City.

Recently, I went to The City to see my dear friend JF. She and her hubby, known here as The Big Deal, are in a family way. So, I had to go celebrate, which translates to shopping and eating big dinners! It is our way.

JF has an amazing apartment in one of my favorite neighborhoods. I am partial to Soho and the West Village. I was able to take a couple of long early morning walks, with a warm drink and my camera. It was lovely. It makes me look forward to my next visit and makes me appreciate the laid back living that I love in my small/mid-sized town.

Here are some snaps from my adventure in The City. It is not FW, but it is pretty.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beautifully Bleak, Part IV

It is so nice to have The Queen home. It also nice to go outside. When she is not here I don’t see a lot of the outdoors. In her absence I spend a lot of time in the early morning and evening reading, writing, watching Netflix, and, well, staying out of the wind and cold. When she is here we are outside at least two hours a day traipsing around the neighborhood, sometimes on the trail and sometimes off, rain, snow, or shine. She is worth it.

Today we saw a lot of pretty. So, I have more beautiful bleakness to share.

Please enjoy!

Beautifully Bleak, Part III

The days are getting longer and warmer. It appears that my first Midwestern winter will be blizzard-free, although, the wind continues to blow. The Queen has returned from her wintering in Virginia – apparently, my dog is a snowbird. So, soon the landscape will start turning lovely shades of green, the fields will come alive with tastiness, and my calendar will be stacked with festivals. Until then, we will have to enjoy the last of the beautiful winter bleakness.

 

In the Event of an Emergency

Who is your emergency contact? Easy question. Sure, my parents.

But wait. Good old Daddy and Mommy live 7 hours away.

No one here knows my parents or where they live. If I don’t talk to my parents for days, they do not know anyone here to call. This is not a pleasant conversation to have with yourself (yes, I talk to myself) even though I know that millions of people everywhere are in the same situation.  But never-mind them, I just realized this and I feel a little scared. Fear is not my thing.

A few days ago I suddenly became ill with some horrible stomach thing (it is still under investigation – my first nearly botched stool sample experience). For a brief moment I thought I might have to go to the emergency room. Luckily, once I got home and situated that feeling passed (no pun intended). But it made me think. Here I am, Ms. Independent, laying in bed (sporadically) wondering what would happen if I could not leave the house or get to a phone. Yes, this is morbid and prompted by one little question. Welcome to an hour or so of thinking, spinning, and imagining all possible secret death/injury/illness scenarios.

I wondered, how would anyone know there was a problem?  Maybe when I do not show up for work. But, who at work would notice? Really only a small handful because I am in and out so much. Yikes. Church? They might notice on Wednesday or Sunday, not good if this horrible thing (whatever it is) happens on Wednesday after church. What if I was in a car accident? No one would know. If I did not call my parents for long enough they might, say, call the police or something. Scary.

At this point, my hyper-active problem solving self kicked in. I promptly selected three people at work who see me a lot, seem to like me, and are trustworthy.  I sent them emails asking that they take my parents’ information in case there is ever a problem. The responses were positive, as I suspected they would be. But they were also very reassuring and kind. One offered to provide all of his and his wife’s information to give to my parents. The second thanked me and talked about how she worried about this same thing when her brother lived in a big city alone. The third gave me her parents’ information so that I can do the same for her – her family lives in town. Support, affirmation, and kindness are always pretty. That was a nice response to my little what-will-happen-to-me hissy fit.

I also talked to my Mommy about this (my Daddy is less interested in this kind of morbid drama) and I think her response is remarkable. She said that being in my situation “is better”, better than being where I was, at home with her. That is a milestone admission. Of course, she also said that I am not the only person who is in this situation (I know, I know). It is amazing how quickly people forget that it is all about me!

It seems like a little thing. Who will be your emergency contact? It has always been an easy question to answer. Now, the question is a little more complicated. Complicated by distance, time, my maturity level (when you are 20 getting sick and needing help is not a prominent concern). Distance, time, and acknowledgement of your mortality makes even the most independent folks vulnerable.

Sometimes to get where we need to go, to become the people we need to be, or to experience things that are necessary for our growth we have to go away from what we know. We have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable. Sometimes it is better.

My emergency contacts.