Sorry kids, I’ve been traveling. And quite frankly, I was having too much fun to worry about much of anything.
Sister came to town on the 9th with her boyfriend. We spent the 10th in Austin, the 11th in Copperas Cove visiting our Older Sister and her husband/kids, the 12th and 13th in Corpus Christi at the beach. On the 14th, we drove back to Phoenix and I spent St Patrick’s Day weekend with the Brother (D), his Girlfriend (D2), and a friend from high school, G. Also, G’s dog, Zack. Zack is kind of on my shitlist right now: On Monday morning, when I was leaving, he made a run out the front door of G’s house and it took me a good 20 minutes to chase him down and drag him back inside. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Aside from some family drama that I promised Mom I wouldn’t air on the internet, I had a great time with Sister while she was visiting. Phoenix was a fucking trip, however. It’s always weird when I go home and while I had a blast, this trip was no exception. Arrived late on Wednesday and immediately crashed. Thursday morning, I went to the AZ Motor Vehicle Division (yeah, it’s not a DMV in Arizona, it’s the MVD. Whatever, AZ, whatever.) and got my Arizona Driver’s License back (I don’t want to accidentally establish residency in Texas, we’re only here until August when the Army moves us again), picked up concert tickets for Saturday and printed out the tickets to the Spring Training Game we were going to on Sunday. Thursday afternoon was spent chain smoking, reading and arguing (only a little) with Sister. Thursday evening, I spent the majority of the night chain smoking and reading at a Starbucks while waiting for Brother to get off work.
It was also EPIC LICENSE PLATE day in Phoenix, evidentially… Saw this one on the way to Starbucks:
And I saw this one in the parking lot at Starbucks:
Once Brother got off work, I drank a couple of beers with him (that’s a big deal, I don’t hardly ever drink) and his lovely ladyfriend and bullshitted until about 1 AM. Brother and ladyfriend went to bed about the same time that their housemate, G got home from work. Stayed up bullshitting with G until about 330 before finally crashing. Lounged around most of Friday before going to see the progress on the house that Brother and Ladyfriend are having built.
Now, I should explain something about my Brother and his Ladyfriend. First, D is not blood, but he’s been one of my best friends since I was about 10 years old. I love him like family and truly consider him to be my brother. Even though we went to high school with his Ladyfriend and D knew her, I didn’t actually meet her until New Years when I was visiting in Phoenix. But I kind of love her too. I’ve never seen D so happy, calm or contented as he is with D2.
So, we’re checking out the house they’re having built and they decide to take me over to the model so I can see what it will look like when there’s more than just support beams up. The model is really cute, it’s a 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath. We’re doing the walkthrough and when we left the master bedroom to go look at the other two bedrooms, Ladyfriend immediately says “And this is where you’ll stay when you come visit, I mean, if you want to stay with us, you’ll always have a place here.” My heart melted. It’s official, she has my stamp of approval. I love this girl and I want Brother to marry her for so many reasons, but it means a TON to me that she’s not threatened by me or my relationship with D. He’s had some girlfriends in the past that didn’t get it. They somehow thought that I was hanging around with him to try to steal him away. All I could think was “Oh, No, honey, If I wanted that, I would have had it a long time ago before you were ever in the picture.”
Saturday morning, I picked up an army buddy (from Germany) who’s now living in Phoenix, E, and a girlfriend from high school (who I’m kind of crazy about), L, and we went to see the Flogging Molly show. It was INSANE. Now, FM plays Phoenix every year on St Patrick’s Day. I know, that’s a little weird, but bear with me. Basically, they’ve always had a really loyal and supportive fan base in Phoenix even before they were wildly popular and they had a tremendous amount of support from the now defunct Edge 103.9 alternative rock station in Phoenix. So as a thank you, they play every year on St Paddy’s Day. I’ve never been to the show on the weekend before, every year that I’ve been in Phoenix and able to go, the show has been during the week and there will be two or three opening bands. On a Saturday, however, there were 9 “opening” bands (starting around 1330), followed by ROGER CLYNE AND THE PEACEMAKERS before Flogging Molly hit the stage at about 2200. First, I fucking LOVE Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. They’re amazing. And I didn’t realize they were on the bill until I picked up my tickets from will call 3 months after I bought them. Second, the show was exhausting but absolutely wonderful. I genuinely enjoyed all of the local talent and the “opening” bands were very good. I wish I had known before the show started that it was going to be 10 hour event, but it was still amazing. I left the show sunburnt, sore, exhausted and utterly happy. I’ll make a more detailed post about the shit-show that was Tempe later…
Slept in on Sunday morning and then went to an AZ Diamondbacks Spring Training game with D. Playing the A’s, we got our asses handed to us. Not to mention the 20 minute “rain” delay for the HAIL STORM that hit the field at the end of the 3rd inning. Yeah, Freaky Damn Weather to say the least. Spend Sunday night relaxing and packing up before the 14 hour, 997 mile drive I had on Monday.
And let me tell you about that.
First of all, when ANYONE thinks Arizona in March, they think 80 degrees, sunshine, spring training. They don’t think HAIL AND SNOW. Certainly not down south. It was cold when I left Phoenix, down the I-10 and when I got to Tucson it was hailing and snowing. It is UTTERLY FUCKING BIZARRE to see snow on cacti. Snowed and hailed off and on until Las Cruces, NM. Dried up in time for me to cross into Texas at El Paso. I had nice, dry, warm weather from El Paso until about Junction, TX. Junction is about 100 miles outside of San Antonio. From Junction to Boerne (pronounced “burn-y”), which is about 1o miles north of San Antonio, I had crazy heavy wind and rain. Hydroplaned on the highway several times but always managed to regain control of my truck. Once I got to Boerne, it was 75* and dry as a bone. Humid as all hell, but the roads were dry like it hadn’t even considered raining. When I got home Husband informed me that “yeah, you drove right through a MAJOR storm system, we’ve had tornado warning’s all day.” Tuesday, Mom called me with “DID YOU HEAR, THERE WAS A TORNADO WEST OF SAN ANTONIO LAST NIGHT!” Yeah, mom, that doesn’t surprise me. I’m just glad I didn’t drive into a fucking tornado last night.
Needless to say, I firmly believe that the weather gods were fucking with me on this trip.