A large package came in the mail the other day with Grammy’s name on it, she was thrilled. Inside was her brand new, shiny walker. After Mr. Shalom assembled it, Grammy could be seen doing laps around the kitchen. She was even excited about the “secret compartment” underneath the seat. She exclaimed, “I can keep my purse, my water, my jacket, or whatever I want down there!”
One Friday, said I to my maiden, “Lets pack a cooler with food, sunscreen, bugspray, water, and my handy five finger shoes equipped to meet all my outdoor fancies and go for a hike!” So we set out for the North Georgia frontier, excited for what awaited. As we neared our destination, I realized I was hungry. We began to see signs announcing the quickly approaching “Earl’s BBQ.” I know that whenever you are in a foreign land, it is polite to eat the traditional food of that place, so I was interested. After I exited the Highway, I couldn’t find Earl or his BBQ anywhere. But, I did find Reba. She owned an all day buffet... Elizabeth warned me about places like this. She claimed we would be served by people without teeth, wearing camouflage. These are the types of restaurants where overalls are the fashion choice most days. Anyways, I ignored her as I walked in and greeted them with a familiar, “Howdy.” This is similar to a "hello" or a "hi" everywhere american is spoken. (Here in the south, they have their own secret language.) Sure enough, our waiter, though perfectly courteous, was wearing a camouflage apron and a John Deer shirt that stated, “Will trade wife for tractor.” I poke fun, but I will admit that I was served the best BBQ I’ve ever had. They are doing something right. Our destination was a location called "Tallulah Gorge." This place made for a perfect day of rock jumping, swimming, hiking, and playing. At the bottom of the gorge, there is a waterfall that is one big rock set at a 45 degree angle. The water rushes over it, and if you sneak out to the middle of the fall, you can actually use it as a huge natural waterslide! Awesome. We came home sweaty and exhausted but we were happy.
I spent a weekend in Chicago. Let me begin this short story with a quote from a picture of me on facebook, I’m a "two-time award winning best man.” This is true. In the last two months, both of my best friends have gotten married and I was the best man at each. I traveled to Seattle for one and Chicago for the other. They were both certainly memorable and filled with many stories. In short, the bookends of Jon’s wedding were certainly unforgettable. There were tiny mishaps like no air conditioning to a guy being picked up by an ambulance next door to the reception. The ceremony itself was beautiful and passed without a hitch. I didn't drop the rings. So, that's good. The rest, including the bachelor party, is just memories.