the classic city

a couple of weekends ago phillip and i had the wonderful opportunity to return to my college town of athens, ga.  the occasion, yes, did revolve around georgia football, but we made the most of the weekend by visiting some places home to my fondest memories while i was in school.

we had driven in town friday night to soak up every minute of athens we could, and since we hadn’t stopped for dinner on our drive in, the first order of business was some food at none other than the famous keba.  we both ordered double lamb sandwiches with fries as the side, and i think it was the quietest meal we’d had in a while because we were enjoying it all so much!  keba did have a location in atlanta for a bit (with the great taste of the original), but it shut down and i’ve of course been craving it ever since.  it was a perfect start to what would become a pretty perfect weekend.

pure joy.

we cleared our table and drove over to nathan and samantha’s house.  i’ve known nathan since college when, as freshmen, we met in the redcoat marching band.  he and samantha have lived in athens for several years now and always are kind to open their home to friends and family.  it’s not often we get to see them, so it was a special treat to catch up on life and football and everything in between.  we did plenty of that especially the next morning over coffee and bagels (which we brought from emerald city in east atlanta) before nathan, phillip, and i drove to campus to join in on the gameday experience.  it was an extra special occasion because it was our homecoming weekend against kentucky, and even though it rained nonstop all day, the bulldog nation still showed up nicely to support the team.

nathan had redcoat duties, so phillip and i donned our ponchos and took a sloshy walk through north campus.  as i imagine many graduates do when they are visiting their old stomping grounds, i pointed out to phillip all the different buildings and where i had class and which lobbies were the best for napping.  the rain couldn’t keep our cheery demeanor down, especially once we arrived at the arch, because taking a picture under the arch is always something to smile about.  🙂

hungry for a bite, we shuffled into the taco stand.  now, i did not do a lot of downtown eating when i was in college, but one spot i frequented was the taco stand, especially when my younger brother clark visited, as it was his absolute favorite spot in town.  phillip and i lucked out with a couple of stools at the bar, so we de-layered, ordered chips and salsa and a couple of beers, and enjoyed the gameday atmosphere.

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this is how we do

hardly a dull moment passes by these days, and this past weekend was no exception.  our friend ashley was getting married on sunday at historic smithonia farm, so a getaway to athens was a must!  after grabbing a grande java chip frappuccino from disco starbucks, i hit the open road.  the drive east on 316 was easy and relaxing, and soon enough i found myself in little five points with garth, al, and kari to eat some food and watch some football.

grindhouse killer burgers has a new location here, and it was the perfect spot to gather.  although the game was in rain delay (apparently there was lightning…?), we let our pregaming begin.  i am warning you now that we drank our fill that afternoon, and as a result, there are oodles of pictures for your viewing pleasure.

we supplemented our liquid diets that afternoon with plenty of food as well.  i started with an order of french fries topped with bacon and bleu cheese sauce.  ooh, girl, you would think i had died and gone to heaven.  the crinkle fries were the perfect choice for the bacon and bleu cheese, and i am telling you now, if you do not like bleu cheese, these fries are not for you.  i could have gone for a quick swim in that tiny little boat of starchy, salty goodness.

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the game finally started, and all the other dawg fans with us were optimistic as the skies cleared and the players took the field.  it’s just the gamecocks.  surely we will defeat them!  oh wait, we’re losing?  it’s the end of the second quarter and we’re still losing?  those feelings look like this, hopeful and brokenhearted all at the same time.

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halftime arrived, and we decided to distract ourselves from the looming misery that would become the uga loss to south carolina.  how better to distract ourselves than hopping on tinder!  kari and i took over al and garth’s accounts and got to swiping.  ah, tinder, the epitome of people judging.  my fingers are crossed that we found them a match.  i mean, who wouldn’t be interested in these two handsome fellas?  these gents are single and ready to mingle!

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well, we made it through the game, some how, some way, and headed over to mercy’s.  we know mercy from the redcoat band during our college days at uga, and she is now back in athens for work.  she just moved into her adorable home recently and was hosting a housewarming party.  of course we just had to be there!

first things first, mercy adopted the sweetest little corgi pup honey, who is a lively 14 weeks old.  i saw that little face when we were ushered inside, and i was done.  i think it’s fair to say that half the night we were consumed with her.  i also think it is fair to say that we wore her out!  there’s almost nothing cuter than a pooped pup, especially when it is a corgi.

sarah & honey & garth.

sarah & honey & garth.

the evening was full of laughs as old friends caught up over snacks and drinks.  athens is a place that will always have a piece of my heart, and having been back several times recently, i realize just how much i love that town.  so many memories of my college days, but now new memories to create as we all grow up and tread into adulthood.  they say that time goes by more quickly the older you get, and from just my few years of experience, i agree and am afraid i do not like it at all…

we all slumbered soundly that night and woke sunday morning ready for a new day.  kari was off to do wedding things, so garth, al, and i grabbed breakfast at the five points waffle house.  what better way to begin the late morning/afternoon than with cheese and hashbrowns and waffles and gravy as far as the eye can see?  not much, young lady, not much.

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oh, also, it was terribly cold inside this waffle house, and from what i’ve been told, that’s actually the norm for this location.  well, now we know…

since we were in little five points, i insisted we hop across milledge to jittery joe’s.  i worked at jitt joe’s for a couple years in college, and it was indescribably fun.  i loved being a barista at school, and if i could make a steady five figures serving coffee to folks throughout the week, you can bet i’d be trading in my laptop for an apron in a heartbeat.  ah, i suppose a girl can dream…

ah, look at the time!  we’ve got a wedding to get to!  we headed back to al’s place and got all spruced up for the big event.  ashley and jonathan met while working together at the wesley foundation on campus, and out of respect for the day and the event, they wanted a dry reception.  well, that certainly doesn’t mean we can’t still party.  1, 2, 3…#soberfun!

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the ceremony was beautiful and big; there were over 200 guests!  the groom and his men were very humble up there, and the bride and her ladies were just gorgeous.  this wedding was my fourth this year, but i never cease to be amazed at just how much love there is at an event such as this one.  it makes my heart want to burst with joy.  ashley and jonathan clearly adore each other, and that feeling is something you cannot hide.

kari, me, ashley, & mercy.

kari, me, ashley, & mercy.

after appetizer hour, we headed back inside for dinner.  mama’s boy, a local athens institution nearly, was catering the event, just as they had for sam and nathan’s wedding back in july.  after that meal a couple of months ago, we were stoked to have some of that good ole’ southern cookin’.  fried chicken and mac’n’cheese and homemade biscuits, oh my!

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folks wrapped up their meals, and since we had some time before the dance hour began, we decided to have a little photo shoot.  ladies first!

and now, i give you, the boys:  al and daniel.

we danced into the evening, tried to catch the bouquet and garter, ate some unforgettable cake, and sent the newlyweds off in style with grade a sparklers.  it was a delightful evening that reminded me how sweet and precious our time is here.  love those closest to you with all your heart and let them love you in return.