Sunday, November 20, 2016


Do you ever find yourself saying to yourself "I'd like to do [this or that] but I don't want to do it by myself?" I say that a lot. For certain things (like international travel or something like that) I feel that it makes sense to not go alone. But for most local things I felt I needed to just get over it and do something I wouldn't normally do alone. So this week I had three mini adventures.

First up--last Saturday I went to see the live Philadelphia broadcast of A Prairie Home Companion down at the Academy of Music. There was an article in our paper, and I decided to just order a ticket so I'd be locked into going short of a true emergency. I was so worried I wouldn't make it as construction made traffic a nightmare, and then I had to work my way through downtown Philly, but I made it just in time. It was so worth it.

The new host (Chris Thile) did a great job. He's not Garrison Keillor, and there was no Lake Wobegon monologue in that soothing baritone, but you can really see that he's going to tweak the show just enough to make it his own, whilst keeping in place the things listeners have come to love. The best part came at the end. A mainstay of the show is the audience sing-along at the end, and this time we sang This Land is Your Land. It was beautiful.

I had a great seat, but part of me wished I had gotten a balcony seat. I always thought they looked so luxurious and elite (which is funny, because they were cheaper). So next time I go to a show (and now I will, on my own or otherwise) I'll be sure to do so.

Next up was the movies. I usually don't go to the movies by myself. Actually, I never go by myself. But at a fairly local theater (one of those delightful old single-screen theaters) they were screening A Man Called Ove, a Swedish film based on the book by the same name. Most people I know don't like to read their movies, but I loved the book so much I really wanted to see it. So off I went.

Oh! I loved it! So well done! The book is so worth the read, and the movie stayed pretty true to the book. It was nice to hear sniffles from other people (sometimes I feel like I'm the only one crying in the theater).

And finally, a day trip. I haven't used much of my vacation time at work this year, so I have some time to use up or I'll lose it. Friday's weather was Indian summer beautiful (can you still call it Indian summer a week before Thanksgiving?) so I wanted to take a little jaunt somewhere. Sometimes I'll take a day and run errands and do the things I've been putting off, but it was one of those times where I knew I wouldn't be doing anything like that and would truly waste the day. So I popped up the question on Facebook asking for ideas. I got a few that weren't what I was looking for, and a few that I had done already. But then there was a suggestion for a place I'd never heard of before--historic Smithville, NJ. I normally get fairly nervous driving in New Jersey, but it was supposed to be an adventure, right? So I put on a cute outfit and headed across the state, dang close to the shore.

Now, where I was headed was a collection of a variety of shops--clothing, gifts, books, food, housewares, toys, and so on. Most things were quite pricey, but I had a good old time walking around and looking at everything. I literally gasped when I saw the light coming in through this window--

This shop had a set-up for every color of glass you could imagine (most from estate sales), and let me tell you--if I had a place for it all I'd have certainly stocked up. I had to sneak this photo, as every shop I went in had a big 'PLEASE--NO PHOTOS!!' sign in the window. But I'm a rebel so I took one. I would have taken one of the red window, but the owner was standing right there. I'm also a weenie and I didn't want him to yell at me, hahaha!

There's a big duck pond in the middle of the village, but most of the day they were just sitting and chilling like this. The benches were filled with older men, who I assume were waiting for their wives.

It was such a beautiful day. Bright blue sky, sunshine, perfect temperatures, not too crowded. I went into a tea shop and bought a peach roobois tea, and snagged a photo of this perfection--

--but one thing I do not need is more mugs. But you can see how I would neeeeed these, right? Don't worry--they're still on the shelf at the store.

I grabbed lunch (a grilled Swiss, crab and tomato sandwich) that was insanely delicious, and headed back. I probably shouldn't have stuffed myself and then driven eighty miles without buying a coffee to accompany me, but after what seemed forever I made it home. All I could think of was trying my new tea in a proper teacup, and eating the linzer torte I bought at the bakery. So my mama and I sat and had a little impromptu tea party and relaxed for a bit.

Big adventures are fewer and more far between, but little adventures are just as good for the soul.


  1. The balcony seats are cheaper because its further away from the action.
    This audience sing-along is something that is catching up everywhere.

  2. I do LOTS of things (including international travel, well... being a travel journalist and blogger helps) by myself. TIP: If you'd take the step to travel alone, take tours when you get to your destination (like walking tours, bike tours, history tours, there's so much!). Don't want to eat alone? Take a food tour, or go to one of those hip 'buffet' type bars where lots of creative entrepreneurs sit. Having said that, I think your trips and outings look great! Especially, when going to the movies or a play by yourself you can really make up your mind about what you think about it, instead of someone blabbing in your ear and distracting you from your feelings. Those cups are ace!! :-)

  3. OH, PS... next time you 'need' to travel 80 miles from something, decide you're going to be Dutch about it (we think a 15 minute cycle ride is faaarrr) and treat yourself to a nice hotel with a spa treatment, it's just the best.

  4. Recently, we went to watch my son play with his Chinese orchestra at Esplanade in Singapore. It was a free concert and full house, so the back gallery was open and we got to sit behind the orchestra. It was a very interesting perspective. Originally I had wanted a balcony seat but after I got the back seats, I realised the balcony seats weren't as close to the orchestra. By the way, you have very pretty tea cup and saucer.

  5. I am short and often choose the balcony because I don't end up with a tall person in front of me.
    Glad your adventures went well!

  6. Oh how fun! For me right now, just going to the fabric store by myself is an adventure! ;-)

  7. "A Man Called Ove" - I loved the book also!



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