- Hampton Inns (at least the one in Greensburg, PA) are surprisingly comfortable and accommodating. I highly recommend them.
- People in Pennsylvania like their guns, as I found out when I entered a local REI-type place (I was looking for hippie sandals!!) to find a table at the enterence pilled with rifles. I didn't find sandals, but if you're ever in need of deer butchering equiptment, that's the place for you.
- There's a really cool Frank Llyod Wright home near where we were called Falling Waters. Well, calling it a "home" is a bit of an understatement. It was built for a wealthy department store owner overlooking (more like, via cantalevered technology, hovering over) a beautiful waterfall in the middle of western PA wilderness. This is the picture we would have taken, had my camera not decided to die five minutes before hand.
- People in western PA have a few language idiosyncrasies that I am not used to. For instance, the use quotation marks to put emphasis on a word, where I'd use an underline or bold or something. This leads to weird signs like Buy One Get One "Free"... they mean it is an emphasis on Free, but I take it as a "ok, what's the catch, what do I have to do to get that second one "free" *wink wink* *nudge nudge*. Also, I encountered people using the word "Yenz" (I dunno how to spell it so I spelled it like it sounded to me) which I was told is a Pittsburgh version of "ya'll" (the southern plural form of "you".)
- During out delay in the Pittsburgh airport on the way hiome, I encountered (from a distance) some of the crankiest Southwest Airlines employees I've ever seen. THere were a couple different flights (all delayed) for which people were waiting in same gate area as us. Apparently, one of those flights was eventually bound for Los Vegas. At one point, the Southwest person working at the counter said to everyone over the loud speaker "Please understand that this is not our fault. Believe me, I want you to get to Los Vegas.... So you can lose all your money and have to come back here and work a real job like ME". Outch!
- We used a new house sitting service to take care of the animals while we were gone. It went very well--animals seemed very well taken care of and happy when we got home. The house sitter left a "top ten funny things your pet did while you were away" list that, among other things, included: "Followed housesitter around house so that she didn't get lose" (our house is not that big, our dogs are just that clingly), "woke housesitter up at the crack of dawn" (yep, 5AM breakfast time woo HOOO!!), and "Barked for treats, continued barking for more treats after there were no more treats" (yep, pandora's box, man--once you get them to bark for food, they'll never shut up!).
- Apparently airports do close. When we got off the plane at Midway there were signs saying "Midway Airport Is Now Closed"... no it isn't.. we're here aren't we?
- Sudoku is fun. I did more sudoku puzzles while waiting on the plane than I've ever done before (completed six puzzles). Sudoku is cool.
- CNBC has stores? Yes, at the Pittsburgh airport, the TV network CNBC has a retail store where you can buy magazines, candy, and CNBC paraphernalia. The poor woman who works (probably for minimum wage or something close) at the store is forced to listen to CNBC financial news all day and all night. That must be ironic.
- Running down those "moving sidewalks" at the airport while barefoot is NOT fun. Nick and I had to sprint, after standing in the huge-ass midway security line for way too long, to catch our plane on our way to PA. We made it, but Nick ran half of the way barefoot (after having to remove his shoes at the security checkpoint, didn't bother to put them back on)... which also leads me to be surprised that an epidemic of foot fungus hasn't broken out among air travelers, since they make everyone (regardless of shoe type or presence of socks) remove their shoes at security.
- Apparently there is a wedding tradition where, after the bouquet and guarder are tossed, the man who catches the guarder then has to place it on the leg of the woman who catches the bouquet... every inch past her knee is said to be five years of happiness for the new married couple.... I knew that the saying was that the woman who catches the bouquet and the man who catches the guarder are supposed to be the next ones to get married, but I didn't know that they were supposed to marry each other!
Yay for PA and a good weekend. Congrats to the Bride and Groom
The End. :)