Friday, August 31, 2012

Game #1 - Texas Ranger

Jeremy and I left SFO on Tuesday evening with a late arrival in Dallas.  After a few drinks at a bar called Sfuzzi (Seinfeld episode - "Summer of George) down the street from the hotel, we called it a night.  We woke up Wednesday morning, grabbed breakfast and headed to the Dallas West End.  We started the day with a visit to the Sixth Floor Museum which was located at the Texas School Book Depository building from where JFK was assassinated.

The museum provided an excellent audio tour which walked through John Kennedy's Presidency, trip to Dallas, and the aftermath of his assassination.  If you look closely at the bottom, left corner of this photo, there is an "X" on the road that marks the exact spot of the shooting.  The window that Lee Harvey Oswald shot from its the far right window, one level from the top (next to the arched window).  The grassy knoll is on the left edge of the photo.

The JFK Memorial one block from the site of the assassination.

We then departed for Arlington to start our pre-game festivities before the Rangers' game.  The Rangers' Ballpark does not have any restaurants/bars within the immediate walking area so we went to BoomerJack's - the bar provided a shuttle to and from the ballpark so it made it very easy to get to the game.

We had excellent seats on the Club Level; unfortunately, the team moved the start of the game from 7:05 PM to 6:05 PM so we had to spend the first hour staring directly in the very, very hot sun.  

As for the food, the hot dogs seemed to be the food of choice for the ballpark.  For starters, it was $1.00 hot dog night (what you would expect from a hot dog).  Another option was the "Boomstick" - a 2-foot long hot dog for $26.00.  I ended up opting for the bacon-wrapped hot dog.

A couple of the unique ballpark features included an outfield plaza that provided seating, a ton of food choices, and a large screen TV to watch the game from this area.  On the perimeter of the stadium, the facade included many sculptures depicting events from the history of Texas.

The Rangers were not able to rally back and fell to the Tampa Bay Rays.  Since the Dallas Cowboys were hosting a preseason game at the same time (that's what caused the baseball game to start early), we bought $2.00 tickets to the game and went to the massive Cowboys' stadium for the second half of the Cowboys vs. Dolphins contest.  

Following our two stadium evening, we grabbed a taxi, headed back to Dallas, found an Irish Pub for a couple of beers, and called it a night.  Next stop: Houston.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

2011's Trip - Boston

After our train ride in, Jeremy, Roberto, and I got settled into our apartment and then headed our to dinner at Cheer's.  For dinner, I went with the Norm Burger Challenge - successfully completed.

The following day, we headed our to see the sites of Boston - we started by walking the Freedom Trail, which takes you past many of the historical sites of early US history.

At the end of the Freedom Trail, we visited some old bars/restaurants.  We started with The Point and the Green Dragon Tavern (Jeremy made a new friend there).

We then visited the Bell N' Hand Tavern which claimed to be the oldest bar in America.  We followed that by stopping at a place claiming to be the oldest restaurant in America, the Ye Olde Union Oyster House.

Following our day in Boston, we had one last historic stop to make - Fenway Park.  This was the only stadium on the trip that I was visiting for the first time.  As we have done with all of the other stadiums, we made a stop at a local bar for a couple of cold beers.  All of the neighboring bars seemed pretty packed for this Tuesday night game.

For the game, we sat at the Budweiser Right Field Rooftop Deck - basically, we above the right field bleachers sitting at table of four overlooking the stadium.  It was a great view, and as each seat came with credit for food and drink, we took advantage of our in seat server.

The Red Sox fell short to the visiting Tampa Bay Rays but that didn't keep us from keeping the party going.  We were staying in the Boston University area, so we found a bar close to the apartment and made sure to stay up until midnight to start Jeremy's birthday celebration off right!

The next day, we continued celebrating Jeremy's birthday - we started with cocktails at the "Top of the Hub" (a bar on top of the Prudential Center)".  Unfortunately, the fog had already rolled in and we did not have a view of the city.  We followed cocktails with dinner in the North End and concluded the night with a Celtics's game at TD Garden.

That wraps up 2011's trip!  Enough recounting the past, this has gotten me pretty excited for my upcoming itinerary   More to come from Dallas....

Monday, August 27, 2012

2011's Trip - NYC Continued

On Tuesday evening, Ed, Jeremy, and I cleaned ourselves up and had cocktails at the Oak Room (still didn't meet Orlando, his shift ended before we arrived) followed by dinner at the 21 Club.

On Wednesday, we left New York and ended up in New Jersey to watch the Devils take on the Maple Leafs - it is quite different watching an NHL game when both teams have been eliminated from the playoffs.  Still, the seats were great and fans we sat with were fun to talk to.

Dear Sharks - you should hire ice dancers!

After the game was over, we headed back to Manhattan and grabbed some drinks in Greenwich Village - more people starting arriving in town for the wedding, so we had a fun group out and out about.  Oh, and I decided I was so good at making pizza that I could mix drinks too!

And then the wedding fun begins....

Friday night was the rehersal and rehersael dinner, of which I managed to take zero photos.  The wedding ceremony was held at the Church of St. Igantius Loyola on the Upper East Side.  We followed the rehearsal with dinner at Giando on the Water in Brooklyn.

Saturday was the big day - following the ceremony itself, Steve and Melissa had all of the wedding guest load onto a bus which provided an extensive tour of NYC as we made our way to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens for a gorgeous reception.  Again, I was not on my "A Game" when it came taking photos.  I have one from the beginning of the day - Steve and I on the subway heading to the Church - and a second from the post-wedding party - yet another good idea to make my own drinks.  And yes, I walked away with the garter.  

On Sunday, Jeremy, Roberto, Trina, and I took the subway to Queens to catch a Mets's game at Citi Field. It wasn't as wild as the previous year's Subway Series game, but we did get some awesome seats on the Pepsi Porch (right field).  Following the game, we had a couple of post-game drinks at McFadden's.  

The Mets' game pretty much wrapped up the New York leg of the trip.  The next day, Jeremy, Roberto, and I would train up to Boston for more fun.