Friday, August 09, 2013

How I spent my (very brief) summer vacation, 2013 edition.... 

I did get to go on a short vacation last month. We had a coupon for a free night at a hotel in Minneapolis, and I was able to combine it with a 15 percent internet discount on two more nights. We went on Thursday the 18th and came home on Sunday the 21st.

On Thursday, once we got into Minneapolis, we had lunch at a local chain restaurant called Pizza Luce. I was able to get a small gluten-free version of their Greek pizza: tomato, spinach, feta cheese, red onion, Kalamata olives and artichoke hearts. It was awesome, and I was able to take half of it to the hotel because we had a kitchen with a full-size refrigerator.

On Friday the 19th, we went to the Mall of America for a few hours. It was far less crowded than last year, so we didn't have any incidents running into anyone with my wheelchair. On a whim, I went into Coldwater Creek, where it turned out they were having a clearance on jewelry that was buy one, get TWO free. I hadn't bought myself jewelry in 15 years, so I treated myself to a purple bead and crystal necklace, some slate blue square earrings, and some dangling crystal earrings. I spent only $30 on $140 worth of jewelry.

After resting in the hotel room for several hours, we left for a comedy club in St. Paul called the Joke Joint. Small family-run club with inexpensive tickets. The headliner was Sean Kent. I thought he was pretty funny, and it was cool to have a night out because we rarely get to do that.

On Saturday the 20th, I rested up in the morning, and in the afternoon, we went to the Walker Art Center, which is a modern art museum. Three of the galleries were closed for a wedding, but there was still plenty to see in the other three galleries. I don't know diddly squat about art, but some of it was really cool, and some of it I thought I could have done myself, heh heh. One exhibit was found art by a single artist from Mexico, and there was one gallery of just paintings, and the last gallery was from 1989 to present.

After touring the museum, we went across the street to the outdoor Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, where the items are on permanent display. The most famous sculpture is a ginormous spoon with a cherry on it that is on a pond and doubles as a fountain. The second most well-known is a jackrabbit leaping over a bell, which was my fave. Some of the sculptures are functional, like marble chairs, and others are purely decorative. There is also a conservatory with exhibits in the form of plants, and there is an outdoor atrium across the back of the park full of flowers. Had a great time there.

When we were done with the sculpture garden, we went to a small restaurant nearby called ChinDian. One of the owners is Chinese and Vietnamese, and the other is Indian and Malaysian, and the food reflects those cultures. They make all their sauces from scratch; you can even buy some to take home and add to your own cooking. I had a dish that contained rice noodles, sprouts, carrots, bell pepper, shrimp, and a mildly spicy tomato sauce which was very good. Dan got chicken curry, which I sampled and wholeheartedly approved, and I had iced ginger tea to drink.

We went straight home after checking out of the hotel on the 21st. I was a lot less tired than I usually am following a trip, at least I was at first. I didn't crash until the next evening. Still trying to get my energy back, but I am somewhat functional, and my brain is very happy to have gotten out of the house for more than a few hours.

When I can get sufficiently de-flared, I plan to write an article with some travel product suggestions. I found some not mentioned in previous posts that I think are worth sharing. Until then.....

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