Saturday, January 23, 2016

Madonna Monday And Many More Thankfuls

A week ago today, I was devouring the best French toast I have ever eaten (and still have the food baby to show for it) at Party Fowl in Nashville. I wish I could do the "I Dream of Jeannie" DOINNNK! and go back there. Hang on, let me try it....

Nope, didn't work. That would have been Thankful #1 in this week's Ten Things of Thankful. Now I have to start all over. I guess I'll start where I left off last weekend, when I was midway through my road trip to Nashville.

1. My long time friend Janice met me for brunch at the Copper Kettle, where we caught up on life and ate and ate and ate. Okay, I was the one who ate and ate and ate (making another substantial contribution to my growing food baby); Janice was much more restrained. I may have worried the waitress a little bit when I told her I was never leaving. Oh, and I had THE BEST SALAD I HAVE EVER EATEN here. No, really! THE BEST. 

Coconut encrusted goat cheese, mesclun greens,
spiced pecans, mangoes, strawberries, with
sundried cranberry vinaigrette

2. Monday, my Person, Terri, and I went to my veryveryvery favorite place to eat in Nashville, San Antonio Taco Company. It almost makes me cry to see this picture, because I want some RIGHT NOW.

3. And a trip to Nashville wouldn't be complete without a trip to Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream.

Salty caramel, browned butter almond brittle,
and bourbon salted pecan

4. The reason I went to Nashville this particular weekend was to see Madonna in concert. Terri's son gave her tickets, and she chose ME to tag along. It was bitterly cold that day, and we were dreading parking the car and walking blocks and blocks in the cold and wind, so this thankful goes to Terri's 17 year old daughter, who drove us to the venue and dropped us off at the front door and to Terri's brother in law, who picked us up in front at close to 1:00 a.m. (We were going to make our maiden voyage with Uber, but we decided the learning curve was too steep for us to attempt it for the first time when it was going to be very late and very cold and we are very old dogs to learn such a new trick.)

We're in!

5. Our tickets were printed at home, and naturally, the scanners couldn't read the bar code and we had to go to the ticket booth. When the woman handed us our tickets, we had been upgraded from the upperest of the upper balconies to 8 rows from the stage. How sweet is that?!


6. I made a new friend at the concert (plenty of bonding time, as the concert was supposed to start at 8 p.m., but Madonna didn't take the stage until 10:30 or so). This is Hayley. She and her husband were sitting in front of us, and we are now Facebook friends. Isn't she darling?

7. Madonna puts on one hella show! The production was nothing short of spectacular. We were also pleased to note that, while she can still dance (including shinnying up a pole during one song), her upper arms are no longer taut, her waistline has disappeared, she has a booty and her legs are thicker, and she has that neck thing happening; in other words, she's normal. Sort of. She's still Madonna, still out to shock, and if you are easily offended (fortunately, I'm not), this might not be the show for you. I lurrrrved it!

Check out the heels.

Fun fact: my husband used to be Madonna's
co-writer's music publisher.

Hanging out with my friend Madonna.

8. Tuesday morning, as I was packing up to leave, I looked at the weather forecast and saw there was a winter weather advisory (which was a HUGE surprise, as I had been keeping an eye on the forecast for two weeks and winter weather was never mentioned). Snow wasn't supposed to begin until 2 or 3 in the afternoon in Joplin, so I figured I would be fine, as I would be arriving in Joplin around 4 and just snow wouldn't be too bad. Now ICE, that's another matter, but just some snow would be no big deal.


I was a little over halfway into my eight and a half hour drive when a fine mist began. Then the fine mist was freezing on the edges of the windshield. And on the wipers. The pavement didn't look more than damp, however, so I forged on. And then I wasn't forging any longer. I was on a divided four-lane highway IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE southern Missouri when all traffic stopped. For a good fifteen minutes, I just sat there, assuming there must be an accident somewhere and waving to the trailer full of calves next to me, and when cars started moving a little, I let up on the brake aaaaaand my car slid sideways. Just a little slip, but it scared me! We were all creeping along in our vehicles and then stopped again at the top of a hill. Ever experienced black ice before? I never have like this! One car or truck at a time was going down the hill, so it didn't become a bumper car track. I went from scared to terrified, but I made it down and up again on the other side. There were cars off on both sides of the road for the next 60 miles (which took me two hours to cover). I gave up in the little town of Seymour and got a room in a motel. The parking lot was like a skating rink (again, barely looked damp; you couldn't see ice at all), but I was at least safely off the highway.

Salt truck. Never a good sign while driving.

Hoping they didn't know I just ate a hamburger.

9. The reason I parked where I did at the motel (the far back corner) was because that was where the car slid to a stop. And the reason it slid to that spot, I found out when I tried to get out of the car, was because it was a solid sheet of ice in that area. It was so slippery, in fact, that I couldn't get out of the car without losing my footing. If they would just bring some salt out and sprinkle it there, I would have something to step on, but the phone went unanswered when I tried to call (five times). Next, I went all MacGyver and tried to use the floor mat (it had sharp little teeth on the back), but it slid away. I dug in my bag, looking for something with alcohol in it to melt the ice. Hair spray! That should work! Yeah, it doesn't. I then called the 800 number for reservations for the motel chain, and the woman I talked to there was so kind! She first made me a reservation for a room, because I feared that other motorists sliding into the motel would fill it up before I made it out of the car, then she managed to get ahold of the owners inside and tell them I needed help getting from the car to the building, and she called me back to tell me that someone should be coming. The owner (reluctantly) came out and helped me in, and at last, I was able to get warm.

10. I was nearly two hours from home at this point, and as there was no way I was going to make it to work the next morning, I am very thankful that I was able to get a sub (thank you, Miss Janet!). I didn't leave the motel until nearly 10:30 the next morning, when I saw someone else finally make it out of there (a light layer of snow that fell on top of the ice in the night helped with traction). 

Doesn't LOOK slippery.

I may not have wanted to leave Nashville, but it sure was good to make it home!

This is how the boys greeted me.
They are a little perturbed about the
empty dish.

Ruby was a little happy to have me home.

How 'bout you? Good week? Survive anything? Link up with us, below!

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  1. You are too funny!! Glad you made it home safe. Black ice is the worst. So scary.

  2. glad you got back safely! Scary!

    1. Me, too! The scariest part was that it was my dad's car!

  3. damn! road trip adventure much?!

    pretty cool story though

  4. I'm sad they left you for five phonecalls (six, really) out in the car park, but the concert, the food, and the TIME WITH YOUR PERSON was surely worth the trip :)

  5. You are my hero! Driving states away to attend a concert. Cool! *in whispering voice*: "kinda weird cool in that life reversal thing that a teenager drives you there and a "parent" picks you up after the show":D
    Look at you. What a scott! You got a new FB friend!
    OK. Let's talk ice. So that's where my Wednesday night from hell commute came from. Out your way lol 60 miles in 2 hrs. not bad. My 25 took 3.5. Ice sucks!
    Glad you spent the night in a hotel Dyanne. I can easily imagine how frightening it was waiting to slide down the hill and then wondering if you were going to make it up the hill. A testament to your driving skills my friend. Good for you.
    That is a fun fact about your husband. I bet he has some interesting stories.
    Glad I picked this week to check up on you. Clearly, there was a lot going on!!

    1. I hadn't driven states away to see a concert in many, many years! And you're right, total life reversal thing with our non-Uber drivers!
      You never know where you might meet a new bff!
      I had one of those horrible drives home from work like yours when I lived in Nashville and a huge snowstorm hit. I had to drive from downtown to my apt, probably 15 miles away, and it took several hours. Glad you made it okay. I do NOT like driving on ice. It's the WORST.
      My husband has some pretty great stories from those days. Glenn Frey was also one of his publishing clients.
      I have been a terrible co-host for the past two months, but I am vowing to be better about reading and commenting, not only on TToT but daily posts as well. Thanks for sticking with me!

    2. But the facts have!
      How cool is your husband :D
      I don't think you've been a terrible co-host Dyanne (coming from a truly "ghost" writer who has been totally sucked in by her job and is spending less and le... lol)
      It's always fun no matter how often you write or comment :)
      You bet!

    3. You are so kind, Denise! I always get a giddy smile when I see that you have commented on one of my posts - thank you!

  6. glad you made it home safely....sounds like you had a blast; the concert, your person, new friend and the food are priceless...

    1. I always have a great time when I go to Nashville, and I always end up with a story!

  7. What an adventure! Love the salad, fried goat cheese, yum, yum. And cool Madonna and the great seat switch. But the black ice - ugh. I had one experience with in locally, I had my kids plus to more in the car. We were only going a mile and a half and it was TREACHEROUSLY scare. I slid right past my driveway going 2 miles an hour. I'm happy you found a place to stay and wait it out. I'm glad your safe. There's something about ice cream and winter, don't you think?

    1. That salad was amazing. A side note is that it is what Nicole Kidman eats, apparently, when she and Keith Urban go to that restaurant (my friend that I was with said they frequent the place when they're in town). I went back three times for more salad!
      Glad you made it home safely! We haven't had a snow like you got since 2011, and we got 2 feet then.
      Ice cream is always good. Always.

  8. Replies
    1. Oh, Carin, it is DELICIOUS. I just wish the servings were bigger! Each of those scoops was slightly larger than a ping pong ball and the whole thing cost $6.

  9. Currently surviving day two of three days locked in with the Hub and Zilla. I love them, but damn I've gotten used to my solitude quickly! :D We're OK - just all a little cranky and cabin feverish because of all the snow and all three having bad colds. Boo.
    Let's talk about that ice cream...I want all of that in my face right now. Looks and sounds so delicious. And I don't even like ice cream!
    The salad is gorgeous - I saw the photo on my Bloglovin' feed and wondered what the dressing was.
    I feel like I miss you a lot lately...and I don't like it. I do see your stuff go by on Facebook a lot, though. So there's that.

    1. I'm a little jealous of your snow, because I do love snow days.
      Go to the link up there for Jeni's. You can see all the flavors they have.
      The dressing was really sweet but I loved it! And I don't usually like that kind of lettuce!
      I'm not a good blogger or good blog friend lately, and I'm sorry. I have decided to get on the stick and get with it, though. So be careful what you wish for :)

  10. We had that black ice on Saturday as we were leaving for Chicago. It is some nasty stuff! Glad you made it safely, eventually.
    I still can't believe you got to see Madonna, let alone from such a short distance!! Sounds like she hasn't changed much in her performance. Did she play all of the old, favorite songs? I hope so.
    Sounds like you and I need to meet in Nashville. You know all the good places to eat!

    1. That really was nasty stuff! I've never experienced anything like that. It really was invisible!
      I would never have sought out tickets to see Madonna, but I'm so glad I went! She played very few of the old songs, but she did do a nice job with Material Girl. She was hyping her new album, which will get zero radio play because of the content of the songs. Can you say "sexually explicit"?! Remember the old days when everyone thought her pointy bra was scandalous? Yeah, that was like Romper Room compared to THIS show!
      I do know the good places to eat in Nashville! But we can surely find places in St. Louis or wherever we find to meet. Hey, we can go to the Arch! :)

  11. All this road trip food sounds delicious. That ice cream and I am becoming addicted to salted caramel.
    I have been a fan of Madonna for a while, but glad to hear she is just like the rest of us in some ways.
    Glad you got home safe. Black ice can be scary.

    1. It was SO delicious! And that ice cream? They will give you a sample of every single flavor and explain the ingredients.
      I have never been a big Madonna fan, but I really enjoyed the show. And I really did love that she was sagging and bagging in spite of still being in really good shape :)

  12. What an adventure! I had a drive like that a few years with Baby Leo in the backseat. Like you, I finally saw reason, gave it up, and found a hotel.
    OH, mercy, that food looks good. I want to go to SATC with you.

  13. You've taught me a new phrase--"food baby"--and I think I've carried "food twins" before! I really need to remember to eat before reading blog posts, because I now want to eat anything and everything.
    Black ice is the worst! Glad you made it home safely. You were a genius to call to get help getting into the hotel!

    1. It's so descriptive, isn't it? I think my food baby grows just by looking at pictures.
      I was thisclose to calling the fire department to come help me get into the damn building!

  14. You are so funny! Reading this made my day!! Sounds like you had a great trip and ate delicious food! Glad you had fun!

  15. I am really impressed at your resourcefulness. Black ice is scary because it can be too late before you even are aware you have a problem. I am glad you are safe and sound.