We drove to Baltimore, MD on Friday morning for a weekend of family parties. Surprise of surprises, I-95 had no traffic problems, and we had smooth sailing - I mean driving - all the way. We followed the directions to the Residence Inn in Hunt Valley and made only one wrong turn. That was a record for us. Our room was ready, the service was pleasant, and after lunch, we rested up for the parties.
Showers on Friday afternoon were almost uneventful. The one-piece set-in bath and shower unit turned slippery and Edgar reached for the vertical shower bar and his hand slid down, and his body slid out of the shower and onto the floor and toilet seat (which broke). Fortunately, he has only two psychedelic purple bruises on his back and no broken anythings. And I did not faint.
After Friday night services, on our way to dinner, Edgar tripped over a wooden log in the parking lot that had no business being there. This unpainted unlit barrier sat between the outlined spaces and caught him totally unprepared. He says that the next thing he knew he was kissing the ground. Friends and relatives rushed to his aid. And with careful and gentle cleaning, several large bandages on his face, and the regaining of his equilibrium, we were on our way to dinner. We arrived at the large and expansive home with the personal guidance of one of the family members. Ben did a great job.
Dinner, delicious and uneventful, mixed with pleasant conversations and great stories from old times. Plentiful bowls of food sat mainly on the large dining room table, but the overflow platters made their way to guests in the living room, the veranda, and the various porches. I was very careful to keep my mouth shut when I noticed some double dipping (a la Seinfeld episode) going on.
From the house to the hotel, a route that could have resulted in complete loss of direction and circling forever like the Flying Dutchman, became easy because Neil drove and let us follow him. Without his guidance, who knows where we would have wound up, or when.
Saturday morning services and the following luncheon exuded scholarship, fellowship, exuberance, and delicious food. Again, we caught up with friends and relatives. One of the guests, a heart attack survivor, still smokes and, to his face, I told him that he is an idiot. He agreed. I told him there were easier and less expensive ways to commit suicide and I hoped he had a paid up large life insurance policy to protect his wife. No answer.
The big party was Saturday night at the Woodholme Country Club. We had directions from Google maps, Mapquests, and AAA. Don't ask. The main highways are numbered and marked but after our 10 miles on these roads, the streets lost their signs. We thought that only people who know where they are going, or who belong here, are welcomed. We realized that we had probably gone too far and turned into a cul de sac street to come out on a highway at a traffic light and retrace our steps. At the intersection, to our great good fortune, a police car was stopped at the red light while we made the turn on green. Hurray. We pulled over, put on our blinkers, and stuck my hand out the window to wave. Nice officer. He didn't know if I was in trouble or just drying my fingernail polish, but he stopped and came over to the car. We told him our predicament. He said he was not surprised that we could not find the street to turn on because it is not marked. "Do you happen to be going that way?" I asked. He nodded. "Could we please follow you?" Again a nod. And when we got to the street to turn on, he motioned for us to turn, waited to see that we had done it, and left. What a wonderful service he provied us.
We told the assembled about our police escort, and their question was "Did he turn on his siren?" I hope they were joking.
The extravagant party had more food than anyone could imagine; a ten piece band with singers, one of whom had been on American Idol; three dancers to encourage the party goers to dance on the floor; an energetic DJ who kept the 90 youngsters, and the hundreds of adults engrossed. Edgar and I even danced a little when they played oldies music for us old guys (but not Moon River). Dinner was preceded by hors doeuvres that ranged from crudites to hot potato pancakes with sour cream and lox to bowls of fresh fruit, and so on.
We are usually in bed before 9:00 but we enjoyed the party so much that we didn't leave until after eleven. Getting back to the hotel presented itself as an ordeal but we received outstanding directions and made the trip without one wrong turn.
The weather forecast threatened possible rain on Sunday afternoon, so we left Baltimore for Bala Cynwyd around ten o'clock in the morning, and arrived home safe and sound. Our gas mileage in our 2009 Nissan Altima was 30.5 mpg. We had a great time and are looking forward to more and more parties, only for happy occasions.