Weekend in Kansas City

Weekend in Kansas City

My mom and I took off to Kansas City for a weekend of shopping and culture. Since I was traveling on her actual birthday it was nice to be able to have some mom and daughter time. 

The drive was filled with gossip, chatter and lots of laughter. We made a wrong turn once and it was a complete accident. Really it was my fault but an exit and a turn were side by side. Anyone could’ve made that mistake. 

We got to our hotel to discover it was filled with soccer and softball travel teams. Kids of all ages were everywhere! It felt like a convention was going everytime we would try to get on the elevator. The wait felt eternal. It wasn’t but it felt like it. Obviously I’m not the patient sort. We had soccer balls hitting the door but if you went to the back of the suite you were safe from the noise. It was a good thing because you could find kids lounging in the halls on the floor like it was a beach. I stepped over more than one with the warning don’t move…really. You know the parents were looking forward to the free happy hour that started at 5:30 that evening.

We dropped our bags and took off for some food and shopping until time to get ready for the ballet. The caprese salad  we had for lunch was delicious. I’ll be recreating that particular dish in the future. 

This was my mom’s first ballet and one that I’ve wanted to see for a long time. So a big check check on the bucket list. The Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts has beautiful architecture with views of downtown Kansas City. Since we’d never been there we went a little early, so we were able to get a glass of wine and sit back and people watch. The Rose’ was a tragedy. You just read that – it was tragic! Worst $8 ever spent so I don’t recommend the wine just go straight for the liquor. 

The people watching on the otherhand was spectacular! Flashy to understated. A real mix. There were a few ladies with an amazing amount of flesh on display for a ballet. Lots of little girls dressed up as princesses, so cute.

When the bells chimed we made our way into the performance hall for the ballet – Sleeping Beauty. It was everything I expected with some amazing performances by the dancers. One of the interesting things was a lady in the audience. She was up in the mezzanine and was conducting the orchestra pieces. I kept being distracted by her hand movements. At least she was enjoying herself and the music was fantastic. The Kansas City Orchestra was a treat! Mom and I felt like we got two for one. Ballet and orchestra performance. 

During Act III the guy in front of me drifted off to sleep at just the right moment in the wedding scene. I had a clear view of Puss in Boots and the White Cat’s performance. They were cute and funny. Such an amusing piece of the show. Anyway back to the sleeping fella….

His date kept looking at him so I could only imagine what she was thinking. Is she amused? I mean his head is so low I can see over it and this guy is well over 6 feet. Or was she irritated that she brought a guy that fell asleep at a public place in the middle of an artsy event. Of course he might’ve sprung for the tickets to impress his girl….if so he’s doing a bang up job. I’m laughing inside.

This reminded me of the time I went to see Swan Lake. The guy I was dating at the time got the tickets and the Bolshoi were absolutely wonderful. I’d seen them the year before in a Nutcracker performance except I was down and center. He got tickets up in the wing. I couldn’t see some of the performance on the wings of the stage because of my position in the audience. Our knees were touching the seats in front of us they were so close. I wonder if he went to sleep. I was so into the ballet I don’t recall or maybe it was just too long ago. Still I would’ve made fun of him just a bit if he did sleep. You know the guy in front of my mom and I got to hear about the sleeping later. 

I asked Mom what she thought about her first ballet. She said it was ok but she preferred a musical. At least a show where they sing. I think I ruined her by taking her to see Wicked first. It is amazing. I’ve seen the show on Broadway and a touring show. They are both exceptional, so if you ever get the chance – GO!

We were able to get down to the valet and out pretty quick. The cost was well worth it with my mom’s bum knee. Even if she didn’t have a bad knee I’d valet! We were starving and at that hour of the night we ordered pizza. They delivered right to the room…can’t beat that.

Next morning consisted of breakfast and a stop at Krispy Kreme for my dad…ok us too. Then we were heading south. We made a stop in Branson, MO to do a little shopping before finally making it home that evening. 

A successful mom and daughter weekend! So glad I could spend time with my mom. Time is short and fleeting and the older I get the more I notice it. 

A few more pics of our weekend.

Enjoy! Just not that wine Mom is holding!!!

-G.

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Gettin’ on a jet plane

Gettin’ on a jet plane

When I’m traveling it’s normally uneventful, which is totally acceptable. I normally people watch in airports because there is always something to see. Humans are fascinating that’s why it’s so fun watching! 

I’ve seen some interesting choices for clothing, behavior that is questionable, I’ve met some unique folks, and I’ve seen ONE celebrity. There have been conversations about religion, hunting alligators, insurance…not real exciting, buying timeshares, and most recently about retired life. 

Let me tell you about my last flight – I got on the plane from Springfield, MO to Atlanta, GA. My seat partner (Tom) was an 83 year old gentleman that had to be the biggest flirt I’ve ever met. He was a character! Before you start singing gold digger his wife was across the aisle telling him I might not want to talk with him. He kept telling her ‘she’s talking to me’. I guess that was the go ahead that he could continue conversing. It sounded a bit like a kid asking mom for a special treat. In this case I was the treat. Sounds a bit wrong now that I think about it, but it was seriously amusing! She has got to be a saint. She also put ear plugs in and read a book the entire time. Tom would swear she reads 400 a year. She’s ahead of me only because she’s retired…oh the life.

Our conversation included discussion about retirement, politics, love, marriage, kids and grandkids, vacation spots, boating and coaching football. He really does coach football and told me that he wasn’t a role model. He thinks that is the parents job. I agree that parents should be the role model, but I darn sure expect my son’s soccer coach to be setting a good example as well. That whole thing about it takes a village to raise a child is true and if one of the villagers isn’t cooperating then you need to get on board before there’s a stake burning.

Tom being the flirt he is offered to show me a good time for about 20 minutes. I told him I would have to check off my bucketlist having a well seasoned gent flirt with me. I also told him I’d have to decline his offer….OMG. He did laugh about checking off the bucketlist, which lead to a discussion about the movie ‘Bucketlist’. One of his favorites.

He told me his younger looks were due to drinking daily. He stopped smoking at 50. He’s a real rascal obviously. This is why he’s not a role model and the villagers would be after him like Frankenstein in Mary Shelley’s book.

Normally my seat mates keep to themselves so no conversation. It was a treat to chat with Tom. Do I always want to talk? No…lots of times I’m just like everyone else and keep to myself. My attitude is not necessarily unfriendly….might call it disinterested. Just moving along in the travel process. No one wants to be that annoying person on the plane – at least I don’t. 

I moved outside my comfort zone for whatever reason and I’m glad I did. I got to meet two fascinating people that have lead and continue to lead an interesting life in their retirement. 

My hope is that I live life, not sit on the sidelines waiting on life. ☺ I think I’m doing pretty good after a few false starts.

-G.