There and Back Again

No, this is not about The Hobbit, though disclaimer, I will be seeing it and it will be so epic I will cry. That aside, I went to Utah this weekend, which was pretty epic as well! This post will cover my stories about my trip, how things went, etc. It will also give a big disclaimer at the end, so stay tuned! This is my fantastically wonderful experience of Utah (minus the drive home, but we’ll get there).

It’s Wednesday night, the night before the trip. What do I do? I go around with my mom all night gathering supplies to make the best darn birthday gift the world has ever seen. Then I spend about 2-4 hours constructing the thing, and the final product looked amazing. I don’t have a photo, but maybe I can get one. It was for my friend’s birthday, who I planned on seeing while in Utah. So then of course, I try to sleep but nah, too many nerves and jitters about the trip. I fall asleep, and the next morning I was just a little fire cracker. It was 6:30 and I was ready to go by 7 cause that’s when the car rental place opened up. But naturally, my mom was not ready. So we passed time by driving my sister to school, packing, and going to get the rental car, and then loading the rental car. I was way too excited. But we finally made it into the rental car and started the drive. We stopped a total of three times on the way out, and I’ll say it now, we drove over 1000 miles on the whole trip, and only filled the tank once. Anyway, so most of the time was spent talking about various things. We covered it ALL! License plates, types of music, radio signals, landscape, religion, roadway signs, speed limits, college, you name it, we probably talked about it. It wasn’t that bad, but when we finally got out in Ogden at the Ben Lomond Suites, it was a welcome stretch. One thing I immediately noticed about Ogden was the landscape. It was almost right on the mountain. It was RIGHT there. And it was big. And it looked way different than the eastern slope. And it was on the wrong side. And the streets felt really open, like there was nothing in front of you, and the shops didn’t take up much of the view. I liked it. So anyway, this hotel is pet friendly, and you can tell by the smell. It smelled a lot like kitty litter. And a woman brought her dog Penny in that was super friendly. It also reminded me of early 20th century architecture, with lots of curly things and flowers and gold and paintings and such. It was a historical hotel, so that’s probably why. The room was decent too. It wasn’t like others I’d ever seen. it was shaped like a capital E. The bathroom was the middle leg, a “living room” the lower leg and the beds the upper leg.

The first thing we did was, naturally, go get ice cream from Farr’s, what we assumed was a local business. It’s local, but it’s pretty big. It was kind of like an old school version of Cold Stone to me. Afterwards we went and looked at Union Station in Ogden, and they held a craft fair that we looked at for a little bit. Then we found this awesome Mexican restaurant called El Matador. I was pleased, and I left a good five pounds heavier I bet. Then it was time to go home and sleep, naturally after one episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. So I went to bed and it was really hard to get to sleep and stay asleep, for earlier mentioned reasons. I don’t know why I couldn’t stay asleep though. I was exhausted. Then I woke up, did my shower and stuff, had a bowl of cheerios for breakfast, and went to do my Weber State campus visit and tour. It was there that I found out I qualified for in-state tuition, about 1/3 the price of out-of-state tuition. Plus my academic scholarship could pay for my tuition probably all four years. So the price was REALLY nice for me. They also gave me a free shirt. But the only sizes they had were XL and S. I’m a M. It was a bit awkward, but I opted for the XL because at least then I could wear it and not have to get rid of it after a year. The campus was really nice, and there were a lot of things on campus provided for free, like gyms and bowling and other neat things. The people were friendly, and I finalized my application there. It went pretty well. I also got to tour the housing options, and I think I could get used to it. CCU had apartment style stuff, and so did Weber, but they recommended freshman use the dorm style to be forced to interact with other humans. Who would want that right?

So the tour concluded and it was really nice. We went to a place called Virg’s for lunch which was like an old 50s diner style, where I again left ready to pop. But we went and did a little nature walk nearby and it reminded me of some places back in Fort Collins, namely Warren Lake and the Wiggly Bridge. Those names probably mean little to you, but not me! Ah, nostalgia man. So afterwards I went to Layton, a little bit south of Ogden, to look for a stuffed chicken for the gift. We looked in Target, Toy R Us, and Michael’s, but nothing. So we went home and relaxed for a few hours. I made plans with my friend to have dinner, and as it turns out, the restaurant was inside the hotel, something I didn’t realize until he showed us to it. But anyway, I’d technically never met this guy before, and I knew what he looked like and who he was, but still never like seen him for real. I had them butterflies! What if he’s a psycho killer who’s really really good at pretending? Who could know! Came down the elevator looking for a way to get out. My mom pointed at the other door and I was like, yeah, that’ll be better. Turns out he was standing right there and I noticed him and he then showed us into the restaurant. The first few minutes were kind of like not real. Like what do you say to someone who you’ve only talked to over the phone or skype or text or something? With your mother there? Eh well it was alright. The stone got rolling and rolled smoothly all of dinner, and for a while after it. It was an Irish pub, so my mom ended up with a salad, he with some buffalo thingies, and myself with a pasta thing. I was pleased, I imagine everyone else was. We talked for a while and it was fun. I really really enjoyed myself, and everything went like I thought it would. He wasn’t some sadistic creep. Or else he was just pretending some more. But we finally stopped, the conversation got REALLY awkward when we both had to use the restroom and I was just thinking “We’re a couple of 16 year old girls, we’re going to the bathroom with each other and talking through the stalls.” Not to mention the conversation material in the bathroom hit a nasty turn that I will NOT be sharing. He came up in the elevator with us so I could deliver his gift. Conveniently, my mom and I forgot our room keys, so we stood outside the hall awkwardly while my mom went downstairs to get her purse and room key. I made him wait and I delivered the gift. It’s all an inside joke, and he went ballistic. It was pretty cool. Then he left and I pretty much went to sleep.

This morning I did my daily routine, we drove to Salt Lake City, looked at the Temple Square stuff, an art exhibit, and then went for food. We went through this pretty cool outdoor/indoor mall and settled on an asian place in the food court. It was fine, but for some reason I was super full and I hadn’t eaten anything before that, so I only hate maybe half of the thing. The sesame chicken weirded me out. It tasted like sesame chicken, but I couldn’t shake the taste of peanut butter and jelly, specifically the ones from Mexico. I don’t know what it was. Maybe it was the nuttiness and tanginess that simulated PB&J. I don’t know, but it was weird. Then we left and headed home.

This return drive felt like 2x as long. Maybe it was because it turned dark mid way, since we left around 2, or the lack of talking, but it took an eternity. And I was really heartbroken about leaving. Everything went great, and now I had to leave. I had a college experience kind of, and now I had to back track to high school. I’d met a really cool guy in person, had to say goodbye. Saw an awesome town, had to leave. I just was uncomfortable and sad about leaving. I tried to sleep in the car, and I had mixed success. I also found out that in Salt Lake, they censor “All About That Bass”. Rather than things like booty, it was beauty. Rather than skinny bitches, it was haters. I was just a little saddened by that. My favorite lines were changed. Oh well. I’m home now. Take with that what I will. I have to catch up on school work, and that means that tomorrow I have to give up the Christmas tree hunt, which I want to do, but at the same time I don’t, and I know I have to do things. I told my mom I wasn’t going, but maybe I will and I’ll figure it out. I don’t know. I hate stiff arming people. But I think I need to learn to do that, otherwise I could overload myself.

Anyway, for that announcement at the end. This trip cemented which college I’ll be attending in the Fall of 2015. Come next summer, probably, I’ll be moving out to Ogden and attending Weber State. I’ve told a few people, but now I’m pronouncing it officially. All I need is my letter of acceptance (hopefully) and I’ll have my next four years generally figured out. At least the college part of them. So, that’s all I really have to say. Utah was awesome, and I’m going to live there next fall. So, with that comes all the excitement, but also all the goodbyes I’ll have to make. In the end, I know in my own heart that I’m making the best decision. It’s been made very clear to me what to do, and all that’s left now to do is survive the rest of high school, and do it.

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