Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Carson City, Nevada - Day Two

DB came back to the hotel around 2:45 AM. And was up and at it again the next morning to be back at Centennial Park by 11ish. He spotted an IHOP on our way into town and decided to get his favorite, Stuffed French Toast, there to start off his morning. The place was busy as any IHOP would be in the morning. Our food came out super fast but DB was unhappy with his still chilly Stuffed French Toast. I had the nutella crepes, scrambled eggs and a piece of bacon. My plate came with four pieces of bacon but they were way too salty. And I’m still on vacation so I got the nutella crepes. Like I’ve said in my Yelp reviews, they’re not great but they will do.

We drove to Centennial Park and I hung out with him and some of the other umpires he works with for a bit. They all seem like pretty cool guys. I finally met Rick, DB’ buddy, and his umpire partner by choice. They knew I was headed to the Wine Walk in downtown Carson City and joked around that I was going to be pretty tipsy. We shall see. I wouldn’t see DB til probably 9ish that evening.

At breakfast, we discussed what I was going to do today. I decided the night before that I was going to see Eclipse. I looked up the movie times and figured I’d go see if after my Wine Walk. So I had about an hour and a half to kill before it started. Instead of heading straight back to Bevo, I stopped off at the Goodwill store to try to find more items for the reunion. I found two crocheted pillows, a book and movie I was going to use for the centerpiece. I still have to order some things so I’ll probably do that now in case things are on back order. I stopped off at the carnival grounds and park but I didn’t know that the fair didn’t officially open until noon. No wonder it was deserted. There was one vendor there that had these great skirts that I think Jenna would love but they didn’t have a small for me. The park was huge. It had tennis courts, picnic tables, a whole lot of trees and grass. I think it’d be a great place for a reunion or birthday party. There was grey fuzz on the ground and it felt like there must be a hen house or something nearby. I asked a person that was walking in the same direction I was “What’s up with all the feathers?” He said, “Those aren’t feather. They’re from the pussy willow trees.” Ohhhhh.

Since I had time to kill I thought I better make the best use out of my time. I parked the M5 in the empty parking lot of the Carson City Community Center. I was hoping it was open to explore and gather some info. The front doors were open but the doors to the auditorium were locked. I found a maintenance person and asked for the main office but he said it was closed. Bummer. So I took photos of what I was able to see and was on my way.

I headed back to The Plaza to Bevo. As usual when I arrived, he was sitting on the couch, leaning against the two small pillows. That day, he was sooo bad. I thought we’d play fetch in the vacant lots next to the motel since there wasn’t a lot of foot or car traffic that made it unsafe for him to run about. BUT, when I did throw the ball around he wouldn’t bring it back to me and all I heard was myself calling out his name and getting frustrated that my dog doesn’t listen. So he did his business and we went back to the room.

I was fortunate that DB picked a hotel in downtown because the Wine Walk began at the Nugget 3-4 blocks away so I just walked. After all, I was going to be walking all day. So off I went to take in Downtown Carson City. It was a nice day; much less calmer in terms of wind than the day before. I was wearing a dress that Kim passed down onto me but I didn’t have to worry about it blowing up and showing my unmentionables. I got a lot of compliments on this dress. Even when I was crouched down looking thru fabrics at Goodwill.

On my way back to the hotel from Centennial Park, I saw three people holding big cardboard signs protesting America citizen’s values on our elected officials and the immigration law in Arizona. I took a picture and will post them here soon. While at the stop light, I only heard one car honk in agreement. On my walk towards the Nugget, I saw the truck they traveled in with another cardboard sign that read “No Amnesty, No Anchors, No Benefits, Illegal is Illegal”.

As I crossed the street to the same block of the State Assembly building, two Nevada Sheriff patrol cars were parked on the street and stopped the protesters about their signs. I didn’t stop to hear what they were saying but the cop made one of the three people lay out their signs on the grass to get a better look at them. From afar, I turned around to see that one of the cops was taking a picture of one of the signs. For evidence? I moved on.

I was smack dab in the middle of the state’s capital. It was cool to see the buildings in excellent condition where assembly men and women gather and where history has been made. I wandered thru the park that had the Governor’s Mansion to the north, the Supreme Court to the east and the legislative building to the south. There was a statue honoring the miners, fallen men and women in law enforcement, Kit Carson who explored these lands and Abe Von-something who was the architect/developer of many of the buildings of Carson City.

KIT CARSON

I walked towards the Governor’s Mansion and thought it’d be really cool to walk around in the old building. The grounds were beautiful. It was surrounded by many different kinds of flowers, tall trees and an iron fence. I headed to the front door and it was locked. Just my luck.

I wandered across the street where more judicial buildings were. On the blocks of cement on the sidewalk were bronze emblems with Carson’s face on it. I walked on towards the Nugget and stopped in the only clothing store I saw. As soon as I walked in, there was a musician to my right playing a guitar. I walked towards the back of the store scanning it’s inventory and found a woman sitting on a bean bag with a glass of wine that didn’t greet me. I take it she didn’t work there but saw that there was a working margarita machine on the counter. That’s strange. I walked out.

I saw store fronts that matched the names of restaurants and stores I came across on Yelp. Funny how some things only exist on the internet to you actually become tangible. I arrived at the Nugget and the reflection of the sun off the gold sides blinded me. I opened the door and I forgot that you could smoke in there. Whoo! I immediately found the check-in area, paid my $10, grabbed my map, picked the wine glass that said Wine Walk on it, tasted the Pinot Noir by Annabella from Oakville, CA, filled out my drawing slip and had a seat. You were supposed to drink the wine only on the premises. You cannot drink on the streets. When I was done with the Pinot, I went back for a small taste of the Chardonnay by J. Lohr. Jenna works for J. Lohr. I’m not a big Chardonnay fan. I sat back down and three ladies joined me. They were friendly and actually invited me to join them on the walk. I kinda wanted to take my time and stop but thanked them for the invitation. I walked thru the casino floor, found the poker room and the long table was filled.

My next stop was the Children’s Museum that looked like an old church. A Children’s Museum on a Wine Walk? That’s strange. I looked around and an older lady, who looked like she’s already had a hard day on her feet, asked if she could help me. I smiled and told her I was on the Wine Walk. She said she wondered why they didn’t take the museum off the map. They were part of the first ones and they only distributed glasses, not serve wine. But she encouraged me to take a look around even though I said I didn’t have any children of my own. The place was like a middle school auditorium for school plays and such. It was pretty cool and the attractions were old but glad it’s being put to some use. They even had a big floor keyboard like in BIG with Tom Hanks. And headshots of President Obama and VP Biden on the wall. Kids typically know who the President of the United States is. On my way out, I picked up some cards of local event professionals that were near the staircase and left my own business cards as well, and some WIN flyers on the racks.

Next Stop: Purple Avocado. Walking towards this spot, I saw a blonde horse pulling a wagon. It stopped right in front of this small house with purple trim. I spoke to the lady in the front seat and the young boy dressed up frontier gear. I asked about their services and said they were out and about to transport people to different places on the Wine Walk. How fun! And it’s funny that the horse was named Bella. (Twilight? Ha!) The horse was 24-years-old and they say that’s young. I don’t know anything about horses but they sure are beautiful creatures. I stepped into Purple Avocado and it was pretty cramped. There were people here on the Wine Walk as well and the crafts and items for sale were great. They had magnets, cards, lotions, wall decorations, mugs, books, music.. it was wonderful. I remember reading reviews on Yelp for this place and I have to agree that it’s was really great. I met the owners and they poured me a Kenwood Merlot and some Ferrari chardonnay. I spent quite some time in the shop and the owners were incredibly friendly. I didn’t notice that there was a small dog sitting on their counter. It was so quite and well behaved and ironically, it was also named Bella. Wow, it’s a sign that I should go see Eclipse tonight again. I noticed a sign behind the counter that said “Your husband called and he said you can buy anything you want.” They said their son got that for them in Seattle. I took a picture of it and posted it DB’ Facebook wall. He loved it and replied with “You can have whatever you liiiiike….” Which is a rap song that came out the first year we were together.

Next stop was a jewelry store called Capital Jewelers. It had a sign on the side of the building that said “Dude, you’re right. Jewelry stores suck. Get over it. Get in here. She loves this stuff.” Great sign. This town has quite a sense of humor. I stopped in and was immediately greeted. I was given a taste of red and a “Coin Purse” appetizer which was filled with spinach and cheese. It was delicious. I took my time looking at the jewelry and the rainbow collection really caught my eye and a beautiful way to show your pride. Again, the sales people were very friendly and there was a lot of beautiful items there but nothing I was willing to personally buy myself.

Like the Children’s Museum, the Platinum salon was on the list of places on the Wine Walk but were not participating. I made my way to Captain Jacks and found myself playing video poker while I sipped on my wine at the bar. We were also offered a pork sandwich with a side of potato salad on a small appetizer plate. I enjoyed the potato salad much more than the pork. I didn’t eat the bread on the sandwich and the pork was a bit tough. But again, people sat next to me that were on the Wine Walk and were very friendly. I lost $7.50 but that’s not bad for entertainment purposes. I was playing Deuces Wild at $.50 a hand. A guy dressed up as Cactus Jack in a white Colonel Sander’s suite and a tall Stetson and white beard and mustache was in the casino as well. That was pretty festive.

Next stop was Shahram’s Fine Persian Rugs. Outside, the ladies I met at the Nugger were hanging outside and greeted me with smiles and loud “HELLOs!” The wine was working. Fun times. The store wasn’t super busy and I tried the white this time. There were two ladies looking at the shawls that were 70% off. I thought about getting one as a souvenir but I don’t know when I’d use something like that.

Across the street was the next stop at Westwall Militia. I had a BB red wine that was described sort of like port but it was quite shocking to my taste buds. It was dry and tasted kinda dirty. I just gulped it down and chased it with two pieces of cheese that they were offering. I walked around the store and every inch was covered with army green or blue uniforms, hats, helmets, photos… it was really awesome. I sat on the porch for a bit enjoying the weather and an older lady sat down next to me while her husband and daughter from out of town took a look inside. She complimented me on my dress. I mentioned how nice it was, inquired if she was having a good time and where she and her family was from. She said she and her husband retired here and loved it. They definitely get all four seasons here. Everyone I met on this Wine Walk was so friendly. It was refreshing. By this time, I’m not sure if it was getting hotter or it was the wine kicking in. Honestly, I think it was a mixer of both.

Next, I wandered into the store next door and didn’t even realize it was on the map. It was called Rockin & Rollin’. Very cute store. It had a little porch and a HUGE rubber lizard in a large, round fish bowl. Behind it was a lizard in a plastic bag about 3 inches long. It said WATCH ME GROW! I thought about getting one for Brent but not sure he’d have the patience. And it wasn’t Thomas the Train related. I passed. I wandered the store and it wasn’t until I reached the back of the store at the counter where I saw wine bottles. I was greeted and asked what kind of wine I would like. Ha! I didn’t even know this was a stop on the list. I took the white. It was getting a little warmer. I spoke to the older gentlemen about the store, the weather, etc. He said he just moved to Carson City from Oregon. I told him I used to live in Vancouver, Washington. He asked me if I knew where Newport was. YUP! My mom and her husband at the time made me go there with them with their friends while they went crabbing. It was also where Keiko was from Free Willy. I love when I meet people from small towns and can say that I’ve also been there. I was only 14 or so when I was there and didn’t explore like I am exploring Carson this holiday weekend.

Next stop was Downtown Coin. Two men were sitting in chairs near the window facing the counter. Nothing in their hands, just sitting there, talking to each other and not facing each other. The lady behind the counter was very enthusiastic. She had about 7 bottles of wine to choose from. I think I went with the white again. And I had a small sugar cookie topped with white frosting and sprinkles. When I consumed that, I had another. It was good. When I cut myself off from the cookies, I asked the lady behind the counter what people look for. And like anything else and how different people are, there’s a huge range. Some people like silver, some like quarters, some gold bars, some like coins that were made in imperfect. It really depends. And it completely makes sense. What one person values doesn’t necessarily mean that someone else is going to value it in the same way. There are coins that are worth five times it’s value but that still may mean that that nickel is only worth a quarter. Whether it’s worth the time and effort to store, keep safe and maintain, that’s the question. She did mention that she had a gold bar earlier that day. That wouldn’t been cool to see with my own two eyeballs. I inquired about stamps as well. I have both coins and stamps somewhere. I started it about 8 years ago. I wonder if there’s anything I have that’s of any value. I should probably start that up again. You never know what you’re going to find. DB has a bunch of baseball cards he’s logging onto Beckett.com. Hopefully that makes him some good money.

I headed next door to the Nevada Day Events and it looked they were only selling blue Nevada sweatshirts. They were pouring one red and had three bottles of Trader Joe’s white wine. Uhm, I went with the red without hesitation. And I was in and out of the store in no time.

I walked across the street to the Horseshoe Club Casino and walked thru the casino floor pretty darn quickly. I stopped and got some white wine and a couple of chicken taquitos and sour cream that were pretty darn delicious. I sat at the bar, put in $5 to the poker machine and checked my Facebook and Twitter. (Jenny’s titi posting made me laugh out loud twice in here. I probably looked like such a lush.) The regular two stools away from me started chatting with me and asked how I liked the taquitos. *thumbs up* with my mouth full. I played until my $5 and my taquitos were gone, said goodbye and walked to the Blue Bull Bar across the street from the Nugget. I was almost done with my Wine Walk because it was approaching 4:30 and the raffle starts at 5. I was pretty shocked that I spent all afternoon taking my time at these stores and wandering the streets of downtown.

I sat at the bar and a regular was there chatting it up with the blonde bartender. Three girls were playing pool in the next room and I noticed this ad for Smitty’s. Roo calls me that.

I had a taste of the red by Sycamore Lane. I should’ve kept a better log of what kind of wine I was tasting; after all I stuck a pen in my ponytail for that very purpose. The regular at the bar eventually roped me into the conversation. He said his son is in law enforcement, that his wife, soon to be ex-wife met a new boyfriend over the internet and remains in Colorado. He has a 3-year-old grandson that asks where grandma is and that it’s hard for him to tell him why she’s not around. I was done with my wine and told him good luck. He said “Thanks, but luck has nothing to do with it.”
“No, but it couldn’t hurt.”

I headed back to the Nugget to hopefully win a raffle prize. I sat in the little shop next to where the drawing was going to be held and ordered an apple turnover. I used to be crazy about these things. I remember going on a hunt with Spencer in Albany looking for some at 9:00 in the evening years and years ago. This was just what I remembered. Hard and crusty with sugar crystals on top. It was a messy pastry but it helped me kill the time until the drawing. Two ladies joined me at my little table to also wait and hope for their names to be drawn. We were chatting a little bit. They asked me what I did for a living and I said Event Planner. She mentioned that her niece was interested in doing that too but was discouraged by her mother because the demand for it was so low in Carson City. Now the niece is interested in doing beauty procedures such as working with Botox. From what I heard from ladies at the WINSpa, Botox is “poison” for your face and I handed this lady my card and a newsletter on the WinSpa products. Anyways… so the drawing happened.


Everyone at the raffle drawing

And I didn’t win anything. BUT I would definitely participate in Wine Walks in other towns. I think it’s a great idea to get folks familiar with what the town has to over. And for $10, it’s a great deal! I’m not sure how well that’d work in Hayward.

The movie starts in an hour and a half and I have to eat dinner and take care of Bevo. So I went to Comma Coffee which was also on the Wine Walk but I didn’t make it that far. It was a cool, big, overly decorated coffee shop with chairs outside. I ordered the spinach salad with chicken and balsamic dressing for $10. While I was waiting, I looked at the tall dresser with shelves that had business cards and pamphlets for local businesses. Yes, I added mine as well. The salad was OK. The balsamic dressing was a bit thick and the chicken was cut into cubes so I’m not sure how much chicken I actually got. I scarfed down as much as I could without wanting to taste it, just to get something in my stomach.

Changed my clothes, fed and walked Bevo, saw the movie, picked Bevo up and was back at Centennial Hall in time for DB’ last game for the evening. I forgot about all the sunflower seeds that covered the ground at these parks and it’s not a good idea for Bevo to be eating them so I had to do my best to keep him on my lab. That was more of a pain than anything. He would not sit still. Then I moved him off the bleachers and we stood by 1st base behind the fence and in the sand. He again was rolling in the dirt, digging thru it and at eating sunflower seeds. Ugh! He would not chill out. Then I took him to the far end of right field near the entrance and he still wanted to eat sand and roll around in the dirt. Next, I tried standing in the parking lot that overlooked the fields and I could still see what’s going on, just not up close. After awhile of standing and a day walking all over the place in flip flops, my feet were tired and my knees were giving me problems from standing and locking them into place. So I decided to grab the car and park in the same spot I was standing in the parking lot and watch the game while I was sitting down. Bevo was ‘grounded’ by having to stay in the back seat.


DB finished his game, he picked up some Jack in the Box, which he said he’s never had and we went back to the room. We had to get up at 7 to go back to the park the next morning. The bed sucked and we all, I mean Bevo as well, didn’t get a good night’s sleep all weekend.

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