Ok, I had lunch, took a walk, had a mid-afternoon snack and am now rid of the headache and feeling less cranky.
My weekend was eventful and uneventful. I crammed all of the events into one day.
Friday was incredibly lazy. I don't think I even got dressed until after lunch, and I wasn't even sick. I woke up, watched TV I had taped during the week, stopped to observe the 2 minutes of silence at 11am. I really can't remember doing much of anything on Friday. It was a nice, lazy day off.
Saturday was the big day crammed full of stuff. Dad picked me up just before 9am and we hit the road for Maine. We hit the border around 10am at Milltown. Decided to avoid the traffic at the main crossing. Wise idea, as it was backed up. We were driving with a small enclosed trailer, so the border guard wanted to look inside. We said we were going across for shopping, and she got this scared look on her face and said "are you going to fill it?" when she looked at the trailer. Hehehe.
We hit the Airline at 10:10am. I know this because it meant I missed stopping at the Post Office by 20 minutes, grrrr... but we had a deadline. However, when we were over halfway through the Airline, my older brother called and said he had to turn back and get his fiance's passport, so they were going to be an hour late. GRRRRR. I could have waited the 20min and stopped at the Post Office. Too late now.
With the extra time we had on our hands, Dad and I decided to go into Bangor and knock a few stores off our list. We headed to Sam's Club, where I got a 3-pack of Christmas Kleenex and Dad got a few things for himself which I took as presents for his upcoming birthday and Christmas. This shopping with Dad thing is pretty good, because he's extremely hard to buy for. Yeah, he knows what he's getting, but at least it's stuff he wants. We went to buy gas at Sam's, but since he had mailed in his membership renewal and they hadn't yet received their money, they cancelled his account and wouldn't let us get gas. Boooo. Your cheque's in the mail!!
We then headed over to Borders, where I picked up a gift for someone and Dad got a Maine map. We both have multiple maps of Maine, but of course none with us, and the shortcuts to Sugarloaf are better found when you know the actual route numbers. So armed with the map and me as navigator, we headed for Sugarloaf. Was kind of nice getting back to being my Dad's navigator, he trusts me with that duty since I love maps and am not directionally-challenged like my mother. Dad could have found his way there without a map, but we didn't want to make any incorrect turns and wind up late.
Getting off the I95 and onto secondary and lesser highways held some interesting sights. The first thing that caught me off guard was snow - the further we went, the more snow that was on the ground. Not just a skiff of snow either - enough that it was 7°C out, but there was still lots on the ground. You could see on the side of the road where it had been plowed recently.
As we were driving along, we happened to see 2 birds on the side of the road... birds? Those are hens! A couple of chickens had escaped and were hanging out on the side of the road. Next we were driving along and all of a sudden there's a racecar trying to turn onto another road, but he's going so fast that he drives straight into the ditch! I did a double-take, as I wasn't expecting to see a numbered race car driving along and wiping out. Very strange!
We got held up at some construction and my older brother called. We were supposed to meet them at the hotel on the mountain, but they were having staff meetings and the dining room was closed. So much for that plan. We met them instead at the gas station at the entrance to the ski hill. We swapped the trailer for my long-awaited kitchen table & chairs, which fit into the back of the truck without even having to put the seat down. SUVs suck gas, but they sure come in handy sometimes. For those who are interested, Sugarloaf opens next week. All of the runs looked snow-covered.
Since we couldn't eat at the hotel, we drove back to the next town and had lunch together. My future sister-in-law noticed my necklace that John had given me for my birthday, so I showed them that and a picture of the two of us - she said we made a nice-looking couple :) I also showed them a couple of ideas I had for my nephew for Christmas presents, and they liked one of them and suggested another that may be good. A trip to Toys R Us will be in my future this week, I think. I'd like to get my brother & nephew's presents bought and wrapped so I can take them up to Montreal either at the end of the month when I go, or when I head up for the wedding. Nice not to have to worry about shipping this year. After lunch my brother changed the headlight in his truck while my Dad supervised and SIL and I chatted while shivering - it was none too warm. Then we said our goodbyes, and left for the return trip. I think Dad was sad to see it be such a short visit, he commented that he doesn't get to see my brother enough.
Our way back was less eventful, being close to sunset and then dark. By the time we hit Bangor my Dad was pretty tired. I was going to take over driving but we were closer to Bangor than he thought by the time he mentioned it, so he plowed on. We hit Bangor Mall first, and since I was in Christmas shopping for other people mode, I was able to buzz through the mall in about 50 min, as one store was out of what I wanted to get someone for a present. Waited about 10 min for Dad to come back to the truck, then we headed over to the new Kohl's. Nice store. I picked up some stuff on sale - a Halloween tablecloth, placemat and towels that have gravestones and says "Halloween Rocks" at the bottom :)
Next we headed to Target, where I bought a couple of Christmas decoration-type things, but didn't find much else to buy. I went looking for a specific item that they were all out of. This seemed to be a recurring pattern for me on this trip - I'd go look for something, and the store would be out of stock. Actually a lot of the stores looked pretty picked over. Bombarded by Canadians on their long weekend. A quick stop at Home Depot to see what they had for closet rods yielded nothing I wanted to buy.
Last stop was Shaw's grocery store. They had turkeys on for 49¢/lb, so I got myself a 14.5lb turkey for $7 US. Go US Thanksgiving! That will make a nice xmas turkey. Also loaded up the cart with the usual stash of muffin mixes for breakfast, my favorite marinades, and (of course) IBC Rootbeer.
After that, we hit the road. My Dad plowed through the Airline in 1h 10min. Not much traffic at 9pm on a Saturday night, but we did manage to hit a coyote. I had my eyes closed and was resting, when Dad muttered something. I opened my eyes and all of a sudden there was something right in front of the truck and we drove over it like a speed bump. Dad said the coyote had crossed the road, and was clear of him, but at the last second doubled back in front of the truck. Would have done damage to my car, but the truck was high enough that it just ended up being more of a speed bump than anything else. Ka-chunk. Sorry coyote :(
We crossed the border at Milltown again, and the guy had us come in and pay out HST but that was it. Thankfully we didn't have to get into a discussion about the table. Yes, it was obviously a used item, but we had no slip of paper from Customs saying it had been brought over from Canada by my brother. No fault of his, though. He did stop and ask for that, but they wouldn't give him one. Said just to call the border crossing if there was any trouble. Yeah. Because you're going to remember the guy with the table? Because you'll still be working the crossing later tonight? Anyway, thankfully not a problem.
Getting back on the highway home, we noticed some hubub ahead. Someone had hit a deer, which was still lying on the side of the road. It didn't seem like anyone was hurt, no one was frantic. They were just kind of hanging around waiting for the authorities or a tow, I think.
We arrived back home at my house and put the table together. Unloaded the truck of my shopping finds. Chatted quickly with John to tell him I'd arrived safely at home, and then crashed. It was a long day and I was exhausted. Wished I could have made karaoke but I was too tired (and likely too late by the time I got home.)
Sunday I got up and went to church. They are still having issues installing the new natural gas-powered furnace, so the church was pretty cold. We made it through mass in 40 minutes, as the priest didn't really do a homily in the interest of not keeping us in a cold church too long. After that I came home, and kept on top of the fire to get the house warmed up. It was a slow start yesterday, but soon enough I had it nice & toasty.
While I waited for the house to get a little warmer, I kept myself moving by cleaning up the table. My brother had been storing it out in his garage, and had been using the garage to do some sanding, so every piece was covered in dust, and just had some general wear & tear gunk on it. I took some Murphy's Oil Soap and water and went over it all in detail and got it looking nice & clean. Spent the rest of the day doing odd cleaning, chatting with John, and watching some football. I am still on top of the league right now, with John 1 point behind me. Tonight's game should be interesting.
This week sees me heading to exotic Grand Falls... I am dreading that. Trying to pick a day to go when it's less likely to snow. Also have to head up to Moncton on Thursday, which is good - I'll be able to knock off some more xmas presents for people at Costco.
That's what I'd like for Christmas. A Costco in Saint John. Someone get on that, will you? :)