I know I just posted a few minutes ago, but I thought this portion deserved to be seperated from the rest. Justin and I just returned from an amazing little two night trip to Buffalo, New York to see his old stomping grounds. There, he acquired the new name "snowman," and we visited this infamous northern city that he so passionately still calls home.
When we arrived on Weds night, he showed me around UB, where he went to college. He showed me the student union, of which he often speaks, where he and his group of guys used to meet up between classes almost everyday. He showed me the Burger King where he ate so many campus breakfasts, the bookstore (I am now the proud wearer of a Buffalo hoodie), and the infamous Flint Villiage where so many of Rob's video shoots went down. After UB, we visited Golden Pheasant where he used to live...I saw his house, Michael Pecca's, and his buddy's parents place. That night we had a Buffalo Chicken Finger Sub, bubble tea, and then retired to the Adam's Mark Hotel in the city.
The following day, we met his friend Jon for lunch and then did a "drive by" to the many places he so often talks about. I saw the "Aaron Orange Hat" Starbucks, the Cheers Bowling League alley, the Wegman's he worked at, and we even stopped by for a visit Canisius High School, where Justin attended 9-12th grades. Immediately when we walked through the doors of this castle-like establishement, I felt like I had been cast as a female superintendent in a sequel to the movie Dead Poet's Society. All around me were these adorably-yuppie little boys, all perfectly groomed and clad in slacks and ties. This, combined with the knight statues, golden inlay ceilings, and aura of tradition was almost too much to handle. It was even more than I had imagined--the exact image of an all boys prep school--and sickeningly adorable that my husband once scurried through those halls in his own little tie. I loved it! After our visit to Canisius, we paid a visit to the mall for a few hours (where we met, and LOVED, Rob's girlfriend Holly) before meeting Justin's best friend, Rob, for dinner. The three of us had a 3-hour dinner at Sonoma filled with wonderful conversation. I am amazed at the incredible character within all of Justin's friends from Buffalo--I have yet to meet one that I don't love immediatley. When dinner ended it was almost sad, Rob is truly Justin's friend, not mine, yet I find myself missing his company already. After dinner we headed to the bar where Justin's friend Dina was bartending to say hello. Unfortunately, she got swamped as soon as we got there, so our conversation was limited. She is just as bubbly and cute as I remembered her from our first meeting. I just wish we had had more time to talk. After a quick drink at the bar, Justin and I began are trek into Canada for a midnight peek at the frozen Niagara Falls. Beautiful, yes! Powerful, yes! Bearable, hell no! Quite different that my first visit to the Falls as a senior in high school, this late-night February visit was something to be remembered. Once Justin and I found a parking space at the foot of Clifton Hill, we attempted to get out of the car for a photo. However, the mist from with falls was freezing in the atmosphere and pelleting us as we approached. We retreated to the Xterra and settled for an arms-length shot of our miserable faces in the cold. We drove quickly up and down Clifton Hill just to say we did, and then headed back into the states. It was still 100% worth the effort.
This morning we awoke, had another Buffalo Chicken Finger Sub, and started our 7-8 hour drive back to Bristow. It was a busy, busy little trip, but it was one of the most wonderful bonding times I've ever had with my husband. He has so much pride in that town, and it meant more to me than I can express that he desired to show me around. I am remined of that Rascal Flatts song "Take Me There" when I think of the last few days. I would do it all again in a heartbeat!