Wrapping up our break of fall while watching Game Four of the World Series.

Lots of fun crammed into the past four days. We headed down to the LVS Thursday afternoon. It was cold, rainy1, and the LVS lacks cable and internet. This was our first time trying such an outing. I’ll admit, I was a little worried. But everything worked out pretty well. The girls played and read and watched movies and, yes, fought and annoyed us on occasion. But for the most part they were pretty good.

Friday we headed over to Bloomington, which despite being only about 20 miles away as the crow flies, ends up being an hour trip because of the hilly terrain of Brown County, Indiana. But if you have to drive through Brown County, this is the time of the year to do it. Lots of good fall foL.ge to look at as we headed to B-town.

Surprisingly, this was the girls’ first trip to Bloomington. S. picked one of her favorite spots for lunch, which turned out to be the place I ate lunch two days after C. was born. That made her kind of happy. After lunch we walked over to campus and I tried to get the obligatory picture of the girls in front of the Sample Gates. They weren’t having it, so we headed into the main campus. S. led the way with C. and L. and I was just behind. I noticed M. wasn’t with me. I turned around and she was hanging back, and inching away from campus.

“M., what are you doing? Come on,” I yelled at her.

“Are we allowed in there?” she asked.

I laughed out loud and said, “Sure, anyone can walk in.” I loved that her understanding of schools is that strangers can’t just walk in, and she thought the same rules that apply to St. P’s applied to setting foot on a college campus.

We made a big circuit of campus, showing off some of the buildings where S. took classes, the home of the J-school where I took classes, and some of the other landmarks. We walked all the way to S.’s old sorority house and showed the girls the brick with S.’s name on it.

M.’s favorite building was the Union. She told us at least three times that she loved it because it was “a hallway, then it turned into a coffee shop, then there was a place to eat, then there was a toy store (the gift side of the bookstore), then it turned into a bookstore, then another hallway, then another coffee shop…” She will happily tell you this with a gleam in her eye like it’s the greatest thing in the world, cramming all this stuff into one building. And we didn’t show her the bowling alley, which might have made her head explode. She also didn’t understand how S. didn’t know who the principal of IU was when she was in school. There’s just no easy way to explain to a nine-year-old how 40,000 people attend one school.

It was a clear, crisp day, and, being a Friday afternoon, campus was kind of deserted. We had to explain why so many people were just walking around (“College isn’t like your school. You might have a class in the morning, a couple hours off, then another class after lunch.”) I liked the kid on a campus tour who was wearing a Louisville shirt. Nothing like trolling while checking out colleges.

Back to the LVS for a campfire, yard work, and putting the watercraft away for the winter.

Saturday we headed south to Louisville. We have friends who have a family member on the management team of a casino just on the Indiana side of the Ohio River. They brought their boys, so the kids used the pool, played games together, and otherwise had fun. It had been a long time since I had been to a casino, especially a Midwestern one. I forgot the joys of walking through rooms full of smokers and all the terrific people watching you can do in a casino. Man, there are some pieces of work down there.

My buddy is a Cardinals fan, so we retired to the bar after dinner to watch Game Three, which ended up being a great, crazy, nutjob of a game. It was fun to watch it with a nervous Cards fan. More fun was the idiot Sox fan a few empty chairs away from me who only got part of the final play of the game. “HOW CAN THEY CALL HIM SAFE? HE NEVER EVEN TOUCHED HOMEPLATE! THAT’S HOW THEY JUST ENDED A WORLD SERIES GAME!” she kept screaming to her friends. I kind of wanted to tell her why the runner was safe, but figured it was more fun to let her rant like a loon.

The big bummer of our time at the casino was that we missed ZZ Top by two nights! Apparently the concert hall was totally packed on Thursday night when they rolled through. Kind of a shame they’ve been reduced to the casino circuit, but I bet they’re appreciated by the crowds there.

Sunday we got up bright and early and hightailed it north to get home in time for soccer. This was supposed to be the last week of games, but all our rainouts mean we’ll play again next week. L., after being shut-out in the humiL.ting 857-1 loss last week, scored three quick goals and finished with five for the day, her second five-goal game of the season. C. played at the same time and also scored a goal as well. As L. and I walked over after our game finished, C. came running at me screaming that she had scored. M. again had the late game and played pretty solid, including a pretty nifty save while she was in goal. One more week and we’ll finally have our weeknights and Sundays back.

Man, another crazy end to a World Series game. This has been a super entertaining series. It’s a shame every game is ending at approximately midnight Eastern, which cuts the already small audience further. You really have to make a decision whether you’re going to stick with it and be miserable in the morning or just catch up on the craziness in the morning.

  1. We actually drove through mixed snow and rain on the way down.