Monday, July 30, 2007
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Oh no, not another reunion.
This time, it was my twenty-year high school reunion. We flew into Detroit by way of Dallas-Fort Worth. Don't ask me why that makes sense - it doesn't. But it was pretty much the only itinerary that worked.
Our first flight was at 6:15 a.m., and it arrived late at DFW. We barely made it to our connecting flight to DTW. Alas, while we did make it, our luggage did not.
But the shortened layover at DFW meant we hadn't had time to grab lunch, so while waiting for our luggage to catch up with us, we ate dinner at a nearby Lebanese restaurant.
Our luggage arrived two or three hours after we did, and then we drove to Okemos, exiting at exit 110, as I had done a million times before. But it had been ten years since I had been in Okemos - and perhaps more like eighteen since I had seen I-96 exit 110. There's been a lot of development since then, all of which was new to me.
But when we got to the old part of town, things looked familiar - the old high school (now one of the two middle schools), Ferguson Park, the "four corners," and Tacoma Hills - including the house where I grew up.
We drove to my old elementary school, now a public Montessori school, and although most of the playground equipment was new, the benches looked the same as they had when I was in fifth grade in 1981, as did the swings.
And the facade up front was familiar and comforting, too.
That night, we met up with old friends (well, old to me; new to Sigrid) at a casual bar event, and then grabbed slices of pizza at Bell's before calling it a night.
The next day, I took Sigrid to see the sights. We stopped at the "four corners" of the old part of town. I was surprised to see that the lingerie store was alive and well - the spot it occupied was Mister D's Pizza when I grew up, and then was followed by a succession of failing businesses, each of which seemed to last for mere months. Apparently what the area needed was lingerie.
Across the street was the Travelers Club, which was where I had my first job (other than a three month stint as a paper boy). We had lunch there, out under umbrellas in primary colors that reminded me more than a little of my current employer. To accompany our lunches, we split a tasting flight of five Michigan beers (the Travelers Club features an extensive beer menu).
After lunch, we dropped in quickly to White Brothers, right next door. When I lived in Okemos, White Brothers was much smaller and in a different spot. It's where I got all of my strings and other supplies for my violin.
We also stopped by the Meridian Mall, in which nearly every store was different than I remembered. The JC Penney was one of the only familiar storefronts.
A bit further east on Grand River was Imperial Garden. Or at least that was the story when I grew up. Now it's a Mongolian barbeque.
Final stop before we went back to the hotel and then to the reunion banquet was to Lake Lansing.
(The flower is just a pretty picture I took while at Lake Lansing.)
The reunion itself was at the University Club, and was a fun trip down memory lane. Next up? Ten year law school reunion, Fall 2008.
Sunday, July 08, 2007
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
Sigrid and I were in New York at the beginning of July for a wedding. We stayed down in the meat packing district - near the Google NYC office. Arriving on a redeye, we grabbed breakfast at a local diner and saw some cool graffiti across the street,
including a guy who reminded me of an old Google co-worker:
The Google NYC office was just a couple of blocks north of us, in a building that occupies a full NY city block.
The views from the terrace at the top of our hotel were pretty good.
and there was also a good pool on the hotel rooftop. Matt and Elinor came by to visit Sigrid while I was at work on Tuesday.
More cloud shots from the neighborhood (I was playing with my new camera).
The lobby of the Hotel Gansevoort at night,
and NYC at night, from the rooftop of the Gansevoort.
And, last of all, a pic of the Apple Store on 5th Ave.