[Pregnancy Day 200!!!]
It has taken me 4 days time and a significant amount of ear infection medication to gain the courage and bad sense to admit where Kristen and I went for our babymoon.
For the uninitiated, a “babymoon” is a made up event that was created by some ingenious travel agent to trump up business. I’m not saying it’s a bad idea; I greatly appreciate the opportunity to have a peaceful, romantic getaway before our lives as we know them come to an abrupt end. I mean, this may be our last chance to do so until Baby Hemmings moves out at the ripe ole age of 47, so I’m stoked that we took advantage of it.
That being said, I think most people who are fortunate enough to take a babymoon probably try to head to an exotic locale, or, at the very least, to a secluded, idyllic setting where they can share a few intimate moments before the hectic pace of life explodes. But not us! Nope.
We went . . . to Cleveland.
Sure, we may be the only people to ever take a romantic getaway to Cleveland, the armpit of Lake Erie. Sure, a babymoon to Cleveland is the relational equivalent of having Valentine’s Day dinner in a subway (and I don’t mean the sandwich shop, I mean an actual subway). And sure, the onslaught of vehicles leaving the city as we were en route looked like a stream of ants fleeing a dumpster fire. But we went anyhow! Because by golly, we’re gluttons for punishment!
(I’ll transition to positive comments now, as my wife, a one time resident of Northeast Ohio and a proud supporter of all things Cleveland is rapidly growing weary of my jokes, as indicated by the pulsating vein in her forehead.)
Our trip took us to an up & coming section of the city called Hingetown where we stayed in a super hipster loft that we’d found on Airbnb. To give you an idea of the area, in our building alone there were the following small businesses:
- A tea shop with an off-leash black lab where they exclusively sells pots of hot tea.
- A bar with a dozen microbrews on tap and only 1 thing on the menu: pierogies.
- A coffee shop that simply sells black coffee, and that’s it. No flavors, no creamers, nada.
- A beet juice store where I purchased strawberry cashew milk.
- A gay porn shop with a large selection of soul records. (As we arrived late Friday night, after most of the other stores had closed, we had to pick our keys up from the proprietor of this shop. He was very friendly, but Kristen didn’t notice the wall of gay porn until mid-conversation with the man. Her poker face severely betrayed her.)
While there we did a little touring of nearby sites, we had several fantastic meals including the absolute best huevos rancheros that I’ve ever had the pleasure to steal from Kristen’s plate, and we did plenty of relaxing and enjoying each other’s company. Unfortunately, by “enjoying each other’s company” I actually mean “suffering through sudden illnesses (her a cough, me an ear infection) which made us very happy to have Vitamin C filled beet juice directly downstairs.”
In between our hipster exploring / debilitating sicknesses, we managed to catch two shows. Kristen had bought me tickets to see Stomp, which I have loved since I was a teenager. It was predictably awesome, even though the gentleman in front of us was neither gentle nor in front of us, as he chose to sprawl across several seats all around us, banging his seat back into our knees repeatedly in the process.
The other show . . . well . . . the other show I am rather reticent to admit. I mean, 5 years from now, I’ll proudly tell the world that I took my child to see Frozen on Ice. But right now, as a grown adult man who lacks an oxygen breathing child, it is extremely embarrassing to admit that I voluntarily went to see a children’s show about a magical princess, complete with figure skating Disney characters and bundles of cotton candy topped with tiaras. In fact, it’s probably top 5 most embarrassing things I’ve ever had to admit having done. Not quite up there with the time I auditioned for a musical in high school, forgot the words to the song I was singing, and had to sing happy birthday instead, but Frozen on Ice is definitely up there.
But you know what, Disney doesn’t disappoint. It was a pretty damn good show. Magical even. (Wait, I left the computer for a second; who typed that?) And it was made all the better by the legions of in synch children perfectly belting out the lyrics to every song like a classically trained children’s choir, weened on Idina Menzel and talking snowmen since they learned to walk. I’m not sure I’d call Frozen on Ice the highlight of the trip, but it is certainly the thing I will remember the most 10 years from now.
Sure, the entire “babymoon” experience was not what most people would do, and it sure as sugar is not what 25 year old Brad would’ve wanted to do (also, 25 year old Brad wants to hurt me repeatedly for willingly typing “sure as sugar”), but it made Kristen happy. And it made me happy. And, with the possible exception of the huevos rancheros, I think it made Baby Hemmings happy too.