Earlier this month we left the girls in MO and flew to St. Petersburg for my friend Rich's wedding. I met Rich the first day of med school orientation and we sealed our friendship that day by eating chips and guacamole on his balcony overlooking Chippewa. An auspicious beginning.
Because we didn't have the kids and had no need to plan much, I didn't plan anything. We had an early flight into Tampa and our Airbnb wasn't available till three. I thought we would just bum around St Pete but Rich himself was at the baggage claim and invited us to join the family-friend hang out before the dinner - and drove us to his house. An auspicious beginning!
At Chez RichnJoey we caught up with his family, met his groom Joey, and made new friends over Italian beef on rolls. And some strange and delicious Korean bread filled with buttercream or maybe it was creamed butter? Clearly I need to explore this cuisine more.
I don't know why I don't have any pics from Friday's dinner at a biergarten. I caught up with Annette, another classmate and longtime hero of mine -- she went to med school at 42 when she had three kids. At the time (age 22, single, childless, my mom making a lot of my food) I thought what she was doing seemed hard but now I understand the force of her will and determination and hard work -- you are amazing, Annette! She manifested her dream of becoming a gynecologist. 👊
The next morning we went to the Dali museum after a most harrowing Uber ride from a woman who didn't understand phone navigation and veered into the opposite lane (no cars approaching) to drop us off. We scrambled out of the Uber posthaste to this view:
I had spotted a breakfast place at the small airport across the street from the Dali museum from the not-so-Uber and we walked there. Warplanes and egg sandwiches and a lovely breeze.
The Dali museum was FABULOUS. A fantastic collection with iPod narration and guided tours.
I wanted to get my hair done for the wedding but failed to make a appointment ahead of time. "Let's just see if anything's open..." I said, a long shot on a Saturday. BUT, an Aveda salon had walk-in availability (just like in Miami, I'm getting too comfortable with no-plans) and Luke and I both got our hair put up/cut.
Wedding party in traditional Korean wear.
Joey and Rich face-fans were handed out for a photo.
Cocktail hour sunset. You can see the grooms walking off for photos in the second.
Rich looks so happy!
I wish I had the text of Clayton's best man speech because it was so eloquent, meaningful, thoughtful, poignant, and powerful.
I loved this wedding.
Clayton, Ricky, Annette.
Fantastic dancer ⥤
Don't Stop Believin'
Outside for Chinese lantern lighting:
Off they go! Ricky and Clayton in the foreground... 💖
We got very hungry in the taxi on the way home and swung into McDonald's (it was VACATION, people)-- everyone else had the same idea and we were stuck in the drive-through for 30 minutes in the taxi. I had a quarter pounder with cheese - always a nostalgic meal for me because it was the meal that my mom and I would get on the way back to Knob Noster (it's a real place) after my ENT appointment (we're talking 1992 here) with Dr. Shapiro (not Japanese as my eleven year old self had anticipated). Anyway, my mom would pick me up at school, we'd drive to another town for this appointment, and get a quarter pounder with fries on the way back to school. It was nice. Proust you can keep your madeleines I'll have a Number 4 with cheese, please.