Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Leave a Peppermint Stick for Old Saint Nick Hanging on the Christmas Tree

Just returned home from the Motherland yesterday. The flight was uneventful; the most memorable moment being getting stopped at security with ten pounds of frozen porterhouse steaks. The woman at the X-ray machine looked at me real funny.

"What you got in this bag?"


She looked at me real funny again and ran the bag back through the machine. Which is good, because now I know my steaks have been doubly irradiated and are completely bacteria-free! Thank you Transportation Safety Administration.

The Monkey and I stopped at Trader Joe's in St. Louie on the way back, to pick up some cheap wine and wasabi rice crackers. Makes a great meal and feeds six, for those of you on a budget.

Upon returning to the homestead, we unpacked our Christmas booty (thanks, everybody), put our frozen foods in the freezer (they stayed well-frozen), and went to get our puppy back from Uncle Joe and Aunt James.

When we arrived, they were in full play mode (the dogs, not the people), wrestling with each other and chasing each other around the floor (obviously the previous photo was taken prior to our arrival). James and Joe still seem pleased to have Ripken, which is good. They were sad to see him go.

Ripken also spent Christmas eve and day at Uncle Joe's parents' house, where, we were told, he promptly peed on the Christmas tree! I don't think he'll be going back there any time soon.

Thanking our dog-watching friends, we went back home, where Ripken passed out on his bed. Monkey and I watched the end of the Insight Bowl (ASU 45-Rutgers 40), and hit the hay. I slept and slept and slept, dreaming of the week we had just had.

It was great to visit with those whom we got to see. We apologize to those we missed.

It was amazing and wonderful to meet and greet the new family members and to see the progress of the young and old. I especially enjoyed spending time with my nephews, Thing Two and Thing One (they can do anything, anything, anything under the sun), as well as my wife's gaggle of monkey-like second cousins (actual wall-climbing was witnessed).

It was great to enjoy the generosity of a sister and brother-in-law, who gave us their club level tickets to the Ravens' game on Christmas night. That was a wickedly cool experience. And the Ravens actually resembled an NFL team again this week!

Christmas, in practice, is the biggest headache of the year, by far. It is the time of year when planning and meeting people (two things I really don't dig on) occur with the most frequency and intensity. However, it is also one of the few times Monkey and I get back to see everybody back home, and that's the best thing about it.

I leave you with a few shots (courtesy of Unle Joe, dog photographer/bass player) of Ripken and London's canine Christmas. Notice how serene they are.


Anonymous said...

A peppermint stick is decent enough a treat for OSN, but when does a brotha get a piece of your porterhouse steak? $3. That's more of a peppermint schtick I say. Ho ho ho.

I do hope you will use a future blog to tell us about the context by which you ended up traveling with ten pounds of porterhouse airplane stylee. Don't they have porterhouse in MO? Scrapple, a five-foot Italian sub, homemade linguini with garlic and oil, Utz potato chips, even Tastycakes - to all these, I say hells bells yeah to transportn via air. But. Splain please to us devoted blogees the why of the porterhouse. Why porterhouse? (Not "Why, porterhouse?")

I'm glad you had a great trip back east for Christmas! Have a wonderful start to 2006, and happy birthday!


ATR said...

Scrapple and Utz also made the trip. The porterhouse were a "gift" from my dad. Why porterhouse? Why not.


Anonymous said...

Let's not forget Baltimore's own Berger cookies! How did you like those, Amy? Never heard....Also, thanks for our cookies...yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Anonymous said...

And the Transportation Safety Administration personnel didn't look at you funny when you said you also had scrapple? Damn.

Berger cookies = soooooooo good. Drooling all over myself just contemplatn.

I thought of you with the Lalo and the H&H! I also discovered a few other good places to eat in NYC for your next trip back back back if you're interested. (Reda, that one's more for Megha than for you as you probably can guess - not because you don't love the foodstuffs but more because you don't love the New York so much.)