HI EVERYONE! I’m back! Home from my weekend getaway with my husband. We had a great time so I thought I’d share some highlights for tonight’s post.
Where did we go? Well, any local New York Knicks fan around the turn of the millenium could sing along with the commercial that we were forced to listen to one-hundred times per Knicks game on the MSG channel:
Life is good, life is sweet, grab yourself a front row seat,
Let’s meet and have a ballllllll,
Yeah! Let’s live for the wonderrrrrrr, of it all – FOXWOODS!
Seriously, we Knicks fans had to endure this snappy tune for years. It’s so catchy too, that listen to it once or twice and you were toast. The stupid jingle was stuck in your head for days. When you finally managed to replace it with something else, it was time for another Knicks game, where you’d get to listen to it AGAIN. Ahh, the power of over-saturating the market . . .
Worked for us! This was our second time to Foxwoods, located on the Mashantucket Pequot Indian Reservation near Ledyard, Connecticut. We’d try the nearby Mohegan Sun but it’s more expensive, which considering what we shelled out for our weekend at Foxwoods, means prohibitively expensive on our budget.
After the three-and-a-half hour drive, which turned into four-and-a-half hours with traffic (you Connecticut drivers are aggressive- and I’m from Jersey!), we pulled into the parking lot at our hotel, the MGM Grand at Foxwoods. Our room was on the 14th Floor, which my husband so kindly pointed out was really the 13th Floor, since they skip the number 13. Great. You’ll be glad to know that we had no bad luck, except at the slot machines. More on that later.
The MGM Grand is connected to that other building in the background of the above picture (which houses other less-affordable hotels) by long hallways, escalators and moving sidewalks. Along the route between the buildings are fun places like an Apple-ish store (I say “ish” because it’s not quite an Apple Store. It’s an “authorized retailer” of Apple products. Still, it was set up like an Apple store and housed all the necessary toys and gadgets to tinker with), a Rolex store and other fine jewelry dealers (for the big winners, I guess), a chocolate stand and more than one Dunkin Donuts, various doo-dad, fashion, and souvenir type stores, and our favorite stop– the gelato stand. Yum. (Friday night = chocolate; Saturday night = pistachio). There are also various restaurants, show venues, and obviously, casinos.
We don’t gamble, so we didn’t spend a lot of time at the casinos. We did, however, slide $15 bucks into a penny slot, which we lost in about three-point-five minutes. That was a BLAST. I mean, $15 bucks is like FIFTEEN HUNDRED pennies! I thought we’d last at least a half-hour with that credit. Nope. It’s a SCAM people! Save your pennies! That $15 bucks would have bought us another round of gelatos (gelati? gelatoes?), but I digress….
My only comment about the casinos (casini? casinoes?) is that people are allowed to smoke. It was kind of gross to me, a non-smoker, but I got used to it. The smoking policy was sketchy though. My husband wanted to smoke a cigar but couldn’t figure out whether or not this was allowed. There seemed to be some imaginary boundary that only the Regulars could see, where the smoking laws kicked in and out.
So what did we do? We ate and drank mostly. We went to Al Dente, an Italian restaurant on Friday night, where we ordered a bottle of wine to top off the pre-dinner cocktails we imbibed while watching March Madness at the bar next door. Dinner was delicious and the wine was wonderful. The dining experience resulted in a spectacular romp through the Foxwoods complex where we stopped at the Pandora store and bought this:
The red heart dangle charm. As we stumbled in, my husband saw it immediately and said, “I want that one for you,” and pointed to the red heart charm. How romantic! He’s a good shopper, my husband. As he paid I tried to talk him into a ring, since the store hosted a spend-a-hundred-get-a-free-bracelet deal, but that didn’t fly. Maybe had we ordered that port after dinner … hmm … I’ll try that next time 🙂 Next it was off to the gelato stand, and then lights out.
Hungover but well-rested, we started Saturday with walking and exploring the grounds. We checked out the bingo hall– you all know about my bingo expertise— but it looked really super scary and intense. The “High Stakes Bingo Hall” was about ten sizes larger than my dingy little bingo hall. We freaked and kept walking.
Somehow, despite the requirement that would put us in public-use shoes, I convinced my husband to try bowling:
High Rollers is a super fancy bowling alley. Outside there’s a glass case with signed bowling pins from celebrities who have bowled at High Rollers. Off-hand, I can only remember Paul Pierce and P. Diddy’s signed pins, but there were about twenty-five or so celebrity pins displayed. Neither husband nor I are bowlers, but we had a great time watching basketball on the televisions and bowling. I told the woman at the front desk that we were going to play one game, but we ended up bowling FIVE games. He won the first two, I won the second two, and he took the tiebreaker. I have to say, Blogtropolis, I may have found my sport. One game I scored 122. Impressive, I know. That game included three strikes, mixed in with some double gutter ball frames. I’ll have to google to see if there is a name for when you throw two gutter balls in a row. Anyway, obviously, I have an issue with my form.
As an aside, since we’ve been back home I have been incredibly sore. You all know from my yoga posts and the fact that I chase two boys around that I am not the most out-of-shape person in the universe. But it seems apparent now that bowling uses muscles you didn’t know you have. That, and I figured out that in 50 frames of bowling I basically did 100 right-arm tricep extensions on my bent left leg holding a twelve pound bowling ball. Makes sense that I can barely feel my right arm, and my left butt cheek is screaming whenever I try to move. Hopefully that will subside by Thursday’s yoga class.
The only other note on our bowling excursion is that I spent a lot of time trying to picture Diddy there, and wondering if they made him wear the bowling shoes. My husband thought maybe he had his own fancy pair that he would make an assistant remember to bring, but I thought they’d just let him wear his regular shoes. I think this warrants a poll:
Thanks. I really need your input on the Diddy question. Onward.
Besides bowling and eating, I read this book:
I read the entire book in two sittings. Sharp Objects is Gillian Flynn’s debut novel, and it’s incredible. If you enjoy crime, mystery, creepy-type stuff, definitely give it a read. If you enjoy good writing, give it a read. It’s not that long and was hard to put down. If Gillian Flynn sounds familiar it’s because she now has a book on the bestseller list: Gone Girl. Anyone read that one? Anyone?
Our weekend was relaxing and enjoyable, and it was nice to spend time with my husband without a little one interrupting us. I particularly enjoyed going to bed late, sleeping late, napping in the afternoon, and reading at leisure. And the gelato of course. We spent a fortune for a weekend in Connecticut, but we never really go anywhere so we aren’t going to fret over the money. Also, we got this pen:
…which I stole from the hotel room. The only free thing at Foxwoods besides parking!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on Foxwoods, P. Diddy, bowling shoes, Gillian Flynn, and anything else that you may want to discuss. Thanks for reading and have a good night!
[Sources: Pic of Foxwoods: http://nymag.com/images/2/daily/food/07/09/24_mgmgrand_lg.jpg; Pic of High Rollers: http://seemysticcountryct.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/High-Rollers-Lanes-Lounge-Foxwoods-300×200.jpg%5D