September 02, 2008

Daytona or Bust

This weekend I made my second trip to Daytona Beach in FL. R and I went for his cousin's wedding, and it was a family reunion/wedding in one!

Friday after work we got in my little Hyundai Tiberon and drove to Yadkinville, where we unloaded my car into his parent's car and hit I-77 south. We drove through the night, stopping once in Savannah at a Waffle House to get a little food, a little gas and go to the bathroom. Then R took the wheel and drove us to Daytona! We arrived at his grandparents house a little after 6 am, and R and I immediately crashed on the sofas. At around 8 his mother woke him up with a phone call from his cousin's children, and we had our morning start. We were able to check into our hotel (Plaza Resort and Spa) and then headed down the street to the volleyball game at the Hilton.

From there it was family family family. Good thing I like them all! We headed back to his aunt's house for a cookout, and then back to the hotel for a nap before the rehearsal dinner. R's cousin is very organized, and we really had nothing to worry about except when to show up! Everything about the rehearsal was in our hotel (which is why we picked it) And it was all lovely. We had a slide show/movie about the happy couple, and then open bar and lots of food! Then the younger set headed up to the bar upstairs and continued partying throughout the night! We danced, drank and had a good time!

A word now about our hotel...it was nice in terms of convenience, but that was about it. Actually, I take that back. The lobby, the restaurant, and all the rooms we used were nice...except the actual rooms we were staying in. Everyone I know from the wedding party had some problem with their room. We had a ridiculously loud air conditioner that didn't keep the room from being muggy/humid, and mold spots growing on the carpet near the air conditioner. They didn't come to do a room cleaning until about 5 in the afternoon, the sheets were not soft, but rather scratchy. I don't feel that we got the value we paid for.

We woke up at a reasonable hour, and went to help out with the last minute decorating. We helped and then were offered brunch...which is where everything went downhill. For some reason we opted to leave the hotel with its perfectly good all you can eat buffet for $10 and go somewhere else. I suggested IHOP right across the street, but when we found out it had a 45 minute wait, we decided to head somewhere else. This should have been easy, except no one wanted to make plans. One person wanted to head away from the beach/touristy area, and find something to eat elsewhere, but every place we tried had a long wait (what, Sunday at 11 on Labor Day weekend is busy?!?) and by the time we got seated and had started eating, we could have been done at the IHOP.

Grr.

Then we headed back to the hotel to change and go hang out on a boat for a while. That was tons of fun! We went with some of R's cousin's and just relaxed for an hour. When we got back to the hotel it was time to start getting ready for the wedding, and then head off.

The wedding was beautiful. B and W seemed so happy to be getting married, and everyone looked lovely. We then loaded back on the bus and went back to the hotel for the cocktail hour and reception, both of which were very nice. There was a mashed potato bar at the reception, which I had never seen, but liked! B dedicated her wedding bouquet to her grandmother who had been married for 65 years, and the toasts were moving. It was fun dancing and hanging out until we were kicked out and then crashed!

Monday we woke up, got breakfast (at the aforementioned restaurant in the hotel) and then hit the road. And almost 12 hours later I fell into my bed and fell asleep.

Good weekend, but man it is good to get home!

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