Friday, November 30, 2007

72 Hours with Fi

Monday began as a normal day, I woke up, I watched some television and then I got things together to drive to Kalamazoo. I was on a mission. A mission I chose to accept. Around 4pm I got into my car and started out into the snow... It was snowing btw. Little did I know that I would never return!


Lookie! Snow!

Okay maybe not never, but I my plans to return the next morning was most definitely not followed, and as usual it was Fiona who started my downward spiral. Not unexpected.

... anyway, I headed for Kalamazoo. In the snow. I get there around 5 or so and after some catch up and re-introduction to Erik Murillo. After a short time at Fiona's waiting for Katy and Eric to join us we headed out to Bells for some good beer and café food. You might think this was just the beginning of a normal night with the peeps, but you'd be wrong my friend. Dead Wrong.

At Bells I got a nice wrap, and it was yummy and a couple of beers, Erik and I bonded - as we'd never officially hung out - by officiating and commentating for the game of Coppers vs. Silvers checkers going on b/w Fiona and Eric on the next table. People really seem to like me I've started to notice, and I've also noticed that I am one witty bastard... we had a great time commentating, and the game came down to Eric's Silvers with a few Kings and Fiona with only one little penny all alone trying to fend 'em off. But like at the Ford Theater, the Lincoln got hosed and Eric claimed victory, but he didn't get a doctor shot for treason afterward.
The group of us trying to watch all of Shultze at 3am

After a couple of beers and some excellent conversation we headed out of Bells and back to Fiona's to watch an Foreign film that Fiona had NetFlixed called "Shultze Get the Blues." A littler diddy about a portly German fellow who starts off retiring from a mine after 25 years and is seen doing a number of repetitive, mind-numbing tasks before finally listening to the radio late one evening and discovering a new kind of music... Zydeco.
This is how excited about Shultze we were. We took pictures instead.

For those of you that aren't familiar with the creole tradition of Zydeco the wiki article I've linked you to on Zydeco should fill you in, and then the one on Creoles themselves in case you need info on that too. I'll just say that it's kind of like Ska but with more traditional instruments (accordion featuring prominently) and a less frivolous storyline. Sheesh, I thought everybody knew this stuff.

!! Spoiler Alert - Skip this Paragraph if you want to see this movie !!
So as the movie went on we were becoming increasingly disillusioned, as Shultze seemed to be not only boring but when he wasn't boring he was predictable. They spent half the movie running up to sending someone (who knew?!?) to the United States for a German Accordion Music Festival and of course... Shultze didn't want to go, but then he discovered Zydeco and now he was interested, then he got to the festival and the Americans were idiots in Lederhosen who had a preconceived notion of Germans that was all wrong so he skivved off and went to Lousiana by riverboat from wherever he was, meeting people along the way and not knowing and english - this part was interesting. He was camping and heard Zydeco so he went to find it and they were all speaking French, as creoles do, and then after a fun night moved onto a family who he discovered when he was out of water and food... They took him in and hung out with him and took him to a dance club, he got short of breath a later died sitting on the roof of their boathouse... but he got to enjoy the zydeco dance club... it was an indy german film... interesting.

!! Spoilers over !!

We watched this movie from around 1-3am and remember I'd had a full day already. Bri had joined us in the first 1/3 of the movie so it was 4 of us now... Fi, Me, Eirk, and Bri and we had recruited Bri for the breakfast at Carmen's, but the debate was raging, should we sleep first? Drive first?
the Erik

A half-hour later We were about halfway to Carmens, I had entertained us (and kept awake) by playing the harmonica and we all sang as many pub runners as I knew that Fiona and Bri knew, but Erik had long since left the company of the car and retreated into his subconscious... Bri was in and out, so it was really just Fiona and I that were going well when Fiona, glancing at Erik's placidly sleeping face decided things were getting a little too comfortable.
A long car ride after a long day with no sleep can do things to your mind...

I saw in her face the scheming teenager that I am sure she was before I knew her - and the scheming college student she had become when I met her and the scheming nurse she was now... we drifted slowly out of the lane toward the shoulder. Across the white line...

At 350AM we hit the rumble strips at 75mph.
A devious look? Or just a devilish girl...

The instant the tires ran over the grooved concrete there was a reaction.

A number of things happened at once, Bri and Erik started awake, Fiona and I smiled and a second after hitting the rumbles Erik flung his arm toward the steering column, hand taught and arm steady grabbing the steering wheel to right our position.

Fiona pushed his hand off as she was already off the rumbles and on the way back to the centre of the lane. She laughed and complimented him on his reflexes as the rest of us joined in. Erik laughed as well, as soon as his heart had dislodged itself from his trachea.

415AM: Arrive at Carmen's house. This whole 'Drive First' had been based on Carmen's usual tactic of either leaving the door unlocked or leaving a key where we could get it. Unfortunately, for us, her Mom often stops by and locks the door. That was the case this night as well.

We walked up to the house and the security light came on outside, and we began to worry if the neighbors would think we were breaking in! We found our way behind the house... the dog jumped on me before I knew what it was, but I soon realized it wasn't a zombie or something and pushed it back down... oddly it never once barked... how strange. Anyway, we made it into the house and began making ourselves ready for bed. Erik labelled a toothbrush as his own, all the contact wearers adopted Carmen's solutions and holders and Erik even put on Carmen's WMU Sweats! The Sweats!!

"The Sweats" : a sidestory...
For those of you that don't know, The Sweats were a gift from Fiona's Mother in The House V1.0. Of course, at the time we were unawares of the V1.0 it was just The House.
We all received a pair of the same amazing pants, 5 total. I've never seen it's equal. To this day we all have our pairs of The Sweats. They are a symbol of our unity, our mission, our mutual love of The House and comfortable pants.

It's blurry but you can see the elusive Sweats in their natural environment...

Lets return to the tale at hand shall we?
So after a few hours of sleep I awoke, tired but excited to be at Carmen's. I heard voices so I ventured out, rubbing the sleep from my sockets and made for the kitchen. I walked in and as I extended my arm for a hug while rubbing my eye with the other I saw a case of beer and soon had one in my hand. I checked my phone, 820AM - bed at 5AM... sounds like time for a beer to me. So with a Stella Artois in one hand, and a smile in the other, we drank our breakfast, while Carmen made some bacon and potatoes.

Erik and Bri joined us shortly and after beers were handed all around and we all were finally fully awake we laughed and talked and as always enjoyed Carmen's company. Sitting down to a second breakfast of solid food we related to Carmen the story so far... she was very happy and related back that she'd spilled the beans to her co-workers that someone had "broken-in" to her house while she was at work. Erik was the most interesting to Carmen as he is the least seen, though Bri was new so Carmen attempted to get her to come and have fun too...

After breakfast we cleaned up our messes, got all personable and sat on the couches to chat some more. I have to admit, I began to doze, the next thing I knew, Carmen was sitting on the floor and it was nearly 10! I'd dozed for about a half-hour and it was about time to go. At 1020AM, 5 hours after falling asleep, we were back in the car on our way to Kalamazoo. Fiona and I up front keeping things interesting and awake, Erik and Bri - the weak shall be separated from the strong - in the back dozing.

We arrived back home and spent the afternoon in a steady daze, sleepy, napping, not napping, and Bri and I went out shopping for a while and Fiona worked on some home projects. Erik was going to head to Chicago to see his fam. After we all exchanged hugs and goodbyes he was gone.
Soon, Bri and I decided that before I skipped town like a 1992 Skip-It she would accompany me to the WMU bookstore for some apparel. We arrived at the windy parking lot and who should we see inside?! ERIK MURILLO! We shook hands and shopped like friends, and due to my lack of funding we left with my arms woefully empty while Erik's were full and happy with his consumer ways thanks to full-time employment!


Andy was due to arrive later and so was Ray... Rather than skip town I concluded I would continue my sleepless in kalamazoo and joined shopping at Hobby Lobby for patterns and fabrics with Jessica and Fiona. That was over an hour of my life that I can't get back. Tired and bored I sat in a chair and spun like a kid at his mom's workplace post-lunch. After HL we decided it was time to go to dinner! Collectively settling on Martini's we made for Westnedge ave.

For those of you that don't know Martini's, if you live in or near Kzoo GO. It's Amazing. Locally Owned, and Amazing. It's off Westnedge and Village St. GO. Just go.

Martini's has expanded since I used to frequent it, once promising myself a once-a-week visit because of it's healthful lasagna and salad, some of the only salad I was getting at the time... hard to believe now... anyway, it's expanded and it was great!

Our waitress had a sort of colourful dreadlocks thing going for her, and she really went with it. Jessica, Bri and I were alone for a while, so we ordered waters and waited for Fiona to get Ray... We looked out the window and 'lo and behold it was Mark too!! So we gathered a new table in and had a great meal... of amazing garlic bread, salad, and meat lasagna for me... and other things for others... it was amazing.

Afterward it was time for Hockey. The rest of the gang were going to just chill out, but we decided to surprise the boys and head to the game.

We cheered, we laughed, we caused a general ruckus and after making up russian names for all our favourite players (Mark was Markomere Gilletteovich) we heaeded up to the in-house bar for some $2 Wiskey Sours.

A while later, Jessica was drunkish and the rest of us were ready to leave and head home to finish out the night. We rented a movie from Blockbuster - I peeed on the wall outside because it was taking too long to find a DVD we liked. We made a pit stop at Taco Hell and then headed back to Fiona - who we would have bet all the money in our pockets was asleep.

We all watched Ocean's13 with a very awake Fiona and then headed to our beds.

The next morning after breakfast my 72 hours with Fiona - that included on 8-10 of sleep were concluded and I sped off onto the cold highway with my windows down and the heat and music up...

I love my friends.