Sunday, September 23, 2012

How I spent my September vacation

Yeah, I know.  June.  Whatever.

So I went to Wisconsin last week.  Remember Wisconsin?  Those of you still hanging on by the thread I leave you will remember a party I went to back in (God I keep forgetting) 2007?  2008?  That trip lasted three long blog posts.  But mostly because the plane almost crashed and I rode across the state with a stranger and was dropped off on a freeway exit at around 2am.  And a whole bunch of other stuff.  Well, this trip has probably a thousand more stories, but I'm guessing by my current blogging track record that if I don't finish the wrap up this morning it's never going to be finished.

So I flew to Chicago, rented a car, made it to Fond du Lac by 7:03pm on the 12th of September (which is EXACTLY my estimated time of arrival as predicted to Dave while barreling down I-294 West), went to dinner with Marita and Dave, drank some drinks, sang some karaoke (good Lord), and proceeded to drink my weight AND Dave's in Jagermeister.  Poor Marita got up the next morning for work to find 72 dirty glasses all over the kitchen and a screen door laying in the middle of the family room.  I'd give you details, but, yeah.. I can't.

Thursday was my birthday so Dave and I got some food, drove to Waupun (what's a Wisconsin trip without driving to Waupun?) (am I even spelling it right?), then came back to pack a bag for the rest of the weekend.    Later that afternoon we drove over to the village of Oregon (that's right.) to meet up with (Naked) Steve and Sue in their fabulous home and neighborhood.  I don't know how much I have written about those two, but they are also remnants of my Cancun past (remember in December how I said I'm never going back to Cancun?  Pay attention.), and they are a kick in the ass.  It's a dangerous combination, those four.  Seriously.  We had some wine and cheese and crackers and pretended to be adults for a little while, laughing about the presents I got (seriously, I got a ton of presents.  I'm 47.  I expect nothing.  My bag weighed 14 pounds more leaving than it did coming.  I have awesome friends and a whole bunch of new sweatshirts, glasses and tshirts), when the limo arrived (I don't care where you live, who you are, how old you are, or what you do for fun, but it's ALWAYS awesome when I limo drives up and it's for you) (unless you're Dave and the heat gets stuck on high and you are sitting backward and you're really hungover and you know there is no where to vomit but the middle of the limo and somebody pulls out more wine).  First stop was a supper club (Oregon people:  there is no describing this.  I was thinking cabaret or dinner show, but really, it's more like Elks Lodge.  Awesome) and old fashioneds (hey, I spelled that right..), and then we were off to a bevy of local bars that you can ONLY find in the midwest - basements of homes, bowling alleys, holes in the wall off the beaten track where everyone is a Packer fan but VERY open to the gentle persuasion that, despite the fact that Oregon beat Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl, they truly ARE Duck fans.  They are.  They wrote it on my autograph dog.  Oh yeah.  I got an autograph dog.

We ended up in a bar where I wanted to make out with this recent Milwaukee transplant but I really wasn't getting the positive nod from the group, and where Steve gave me a lap dance (it's a pretty funny picture), and the number of cream-based birthday shots was too high to count, then landed back at our hosts' home and crashed for a few hours.

Friday we went to Madison, where my phone died briefly and we lunched and walked and toured and were actually somewhat civilized, important to add only because later that day we were off to the Wisconsin Dells for the weekend showcase, Wo-Zha-Wa (known in 2012 as "JoyceFest", and I spelled it right because I have the custom mouse pad and coffee mug in front of me to prove it).

Wo-Zha-Wa is a fest.  It's the end of the Summer season for the resort town, or some God damned thing, but there were tents and rides and it was packed and there were brats and penny-pitching and crap for sale on sidewalk tables and people people people.  We camped.  It's involved, but I had my own tent (that I had to close with a hair clip, which is actually kind of inventive of me considering how drunk I was both nights), and I hope I never ever have to share a shower with those two beetles again.  They were dead but I still think of them.

The rest of the weekend, frankly, was a blur of beer, shots, sand, gin, gin, gin, JoyceFest t-shirts, bad pop songs (bad pop SONG.  BAD.), taxi cab bruises (still very present), a Duck win, bad behavior (that I didn't instigate, let me just go on record by saying), dancing (not me), flashing (again, not me), screaming children (you know what, I am going to write a totally separate post about THAT), and above all, LAUGHING.  Oh my hell.  It was a BLAST.

By Sunday I was dressing to camouflage my liver, so back to Fond du Lac we went, just Marita, Dave and I, while Steve and Sue went back to Oregon (the village), toward a small amount of normalcy - frozen custard and napping.  Monday I drove back to Chicago, had lunch with my sister-in-law Lisette, and boarded the bumpy plane back to Oregon (the state).

My liver is still wet, but my laundry has been done for days, my cats are over their anxiety, and I'm almost late for coffee with Gay Neighbor Geoff.  The Wisconsin faction is in Cancun right now, doing it all again.  I could NEVER have done that (well, maybe...) again, but one never knows what next year could bring..

Truly a fabulous way to spend the 47th.  I hope that I have the opportunity to host them here (though not in my tiny apartment) but I'm not sure I could replicate the experience.  Easily one of the greatest highlights of my life.  Wisconsin makes some pretty awesome people.


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