Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The New York Stock Exchange or Taco Bell?

Last weekend, Barry, Isla and I, went to Liverpool and Manchester, England for a break.  It was my first trip to England and the fact that Manchester has a Taco Bell...well, that only made me want to go there more!

We arrived in Liverpool on Thursday morning and from the minute we arrived we didn't stop.  I'm one that likes to see everything...especially if it is somewhere I've never been before.  And, we saw just about everything you could see in 4 days: Both cathedrals in Liverpool, where the Beatles got their start (Matthew Street, the Cavern Club, etc.), Albert Dock, Liverpool One, Lime Street Station, the World Museum, the Liverpool Museum, and one of my favorites was the Tate Gallery.

The Tate Gallery had an especially exciting exhibit for me to see: The Monet, Twombly and Turner exhibit.  Monet is my favorite artist and getting to see the famous Water Lilies paintings among the others was just amazing.  Seeing the paint on the canvas, you can just picture him standing there in front of it putting the paint on it.  It really is cool.  At least for me!

Monet's House of Parliament

Monet's Water Lilies.
We ran in to a few interesting people in our hotel.  Here's one story:

Two women were waiting with us on the fifth floor to catch the elevator down to the Lobby.  One woman pushes the up button so "the elevator would know to come up for us."  I nearly had to clean my ears out when I heard it because I thought surely no one is that stupid. 

And, here's another story: 

Barry and I are on the elevator going down to the Lobby.  We stop on the 3rd floor and a man and a woman get on.  The woman gets on and turns to the left and faces the side wall of the elevator...nearly with her nose pushed up on the wall!  Barry and I just stood there in astonishment wondering what the hell she was doing.  But, her male companion was no better.  He stood by the elevator door and then wrapped his arms around his body, as if he was in a straight jacket, almost as if he was trying to keep the elevator doors from chopping his arms off even though he was miles away from the door.  We couldn't help but wonder was it perhaps their first time on an elevator? 

All this elevator talk brings me back to a major pet peeve of mine since having a baby. Why do people with perfectly good, working legs get on elevators when there are functioning escalators INCHES from the elevators!  They don't have prams...there are no walkers, wheelchairs or canes in sight, yet their legs apparently don't work so they have to litter the elevator with their lazy asses while people who can't use the escalators (us), because we have a pram, are forced to wait through five or more cycles of up and down elevator stops before getting an elevator with enough room for us!  It fries my brain!

We were at the World Museum in Liverpool and we were on the 2nd floor looking to go up to the 4th floor.  Both elevators in this Museum were non-stop busy but there were stairs there, too.  So after waiting on several elevators, each being filled to capacity (mostly with people without prams, wheelchairs, etc.), the elevator finally arrives and a woman with a pram gets off on our floor.  Score!  There is finally room for us on the elevator.  However, once the woman gets off, a man still on the elevator (with two working legs and no pram, wheelchair, etc.) has the audacity to push the doors close button before we have a chance to get on!  Barry, with his cat-like reflexes, pushes the up button again and the doors pop open and he rams the pram on the elevator.  My jaw dropped when the man was going up only one level.  He couldn't have even gotten off the elevator to walk up ONE flight of stairs to allow us with a pram on the elevator.  I realize sometimes you don't pay attention to things like that until you have to use an elevator all the time because you can't go on escalators, stairs, etc.  But, COME ON, a little common courtesy should come in to play here.

So, with that little bitchfest over, enjoy some Liverpool photos.  We actually did have a good time even though all I've done is complain so far in the blog post lol.

Chinatown arch

Liver Building

View from Albert Dock


At Albert Dock

Cathedral...or spaceship?

Outside the Cavern Club...where The Beatles got their start

View from our hotel

Barry kept saying,"Look at the helicopter." Lol...it was a crane.

On Saturday, we took the train in to Manchester where we went to the Arndale Center and Taco Bell.  And, the cathedral and John Rylands Library...but, did I mention we went to Taco Bell?

So, we arrive at the Arndale Center Food Court where I'm greeted by my trust friend, Taco Bell.  I'm astonished first of all at the sheer size of the Arndale Center.  Massive.  With three Starbucks under one roof...you know it is huge.  The Food Court is no different and the crowds there...well, I've never seen anything like it.  I go to order my Taco Bell and it is sooooo freakin' hectic, I felt like I was on the New York Stock Exchange.  I was so rushed to place my order, I couldn't focus and get what I wanted.  So, in a moment of panic, I just blurted out, "Crunchwrap Supreme!"  Immediately, I said to myself, "What? A Crunchwrap Supreme????  What the hell!!! I would never order that!!!" But, it was too late.  The cashier had processed my order and the next one in line in the chaos was placing their order.  Now, I'm not stranger to crowds and I can generally keep up, but this was just shocking!  Anyway, I ate the Taco Bell and it was delish.

The Manchester Cathedral

At the Manchester train station

At the John Rylands Library...the oldest piece of the New Testament

On the train to Manchester.
And, this is just a pretty cup of coffee:

Monday, October 29, 2012

Sexy Zumba lady and Happy Halloween

So, today was a normal Monday, which typically ends with a Zumba class in the evening.  Today was no different, except today was dress up day at Zumba.  Some people dressed up and took their costumes out for a test drive before Halloween on Wednesday and others played it safe and knew it would be too hot and sweaty to dress up in costumes for an hour long Zumba class. 

Barry and I cooked up a surprise for class tonight, which nearly didn't happen.  Why?  Well, this is how I spent my afternoon:

Barry:  Show me the steps again.
Me:  Gangnam style starts playing.  I show him the steps.  Barry follows.
Barry: Stopping abruptly.  No,  I can't do this.  No, that's it.  I can't.
Me: Come on!  I told people we had a surprise.  This was your idea you have to do it!
Barry: I don't care, I'm not doing it.  I'm shitting meself.
Me: Come on...its just a few seconds!
Barry: No.  Right, go on show me the steps again.

Anyway, some form of this conversation went on over and over again most of the afternoon.  Turns out Barry did follow through with the surprise and it went over really, really well.  What was the surprise?  In case you haven't figured it out yet....

HE DRESSED UP LIKE ME and did a few seconds of our warm-up song which, at the minute, is Gangnam Style.

Here's my handsome husband:
There's Barry on the left.  That's a dead Mario and Luigi on the right.  Dead because they crashed their go karts.

Here are some of the lovely Zumbies who sported their costumes in class tonight.
Aww...there's the Zumba baby in her first Halloween costume before class.  Scary witch!

And now...the grand finale...the VIDEO of Barry's Gangnam Style warm-up:

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The great pumpkin carve

 Isla's first Halloween is just around the corner, so we thought we'd get a few pumpkins and do some carving.  We were going to let Isla carve her own, but after she nearly chopped her hand off with the carving knife, we decided to do it for her.  Yes, I'm joking.  You don't think I'd give an 8 month old a knife do you?  Especially after the disaster she caused with the chainsaw we gave her to play with.  We're not idiots, after all.

Anyway,  here is a little pictorial of our pumpkin carving day:

We then roasted and ate the seeds. If you haven't done it before, they're gorgeous!  A little salt and oil and roast them in the oven.
Yes, I know it's a mess...but, they're supposed to be, yes?

The two perched on the mantle.

Isla's favourite cartoon character: Lau Lau from Waybuloo.  BULOOOOOOOOOOO....
Oh, and Barry has a lot of time on his hands so this is his latest creation below.  We are doing Thriller in Zumba up to Halloween and he decided to do this to show his support.  Of course, he had to pick the worst and sweatiest pic of me!  Oh, what I wouldn't have given to be MJ when I was little...and now, I am!  Lookin' well Zumba Zombies!