Once I finally arrived in Jacksonville, and my friend picked me up outside of the Florida Theatre, the rest of the weekend was a lot smoother. I felt like a hitchhiker most of the time, but with awesome people donating rides. When Beth swooped me up they’d brought me a piece of pizza! Since all I’d eaten since 5ish was an orange, and it was almost 11 that was like heaven in a box. We went by her and Anna’s place real quick so she could let her dog Codi out real fast, and oh my gosh what a love muffin! So sweet! (I know, I’ve met SO MANY great dogs lately!) Then we went over to this place called Monkey’s Uncle where we met up with a bunch of their friends. There was karoke going on. I rarely drink anymore, but I also rarely go to bars anymore (red letter weekend!) but I definitely got a second wind of energy after such a crazy day. I had already decided that with me being in Jax and my car being in Georgia, there was no point in worrying about anything. So I did just that, and it was really nice to truly let things go. Their friends were a riot and if there is something I love it is definitely watching entertaining karoke. I mean seriously. ESPECIALLY when Piano Man is involved, seriously this guy (who they kept calling Yellowcard and since YC was from Jax I had to wonder if he was originally involved with the band?) did like THE BEST VERSION of Piano Man I’ve ever heard! Their friend Bo got reeeally into it, and it was awesome. Then their friend Courtney sang Friends in Low Places and she was on crutches for a foot injury and she definitely involved the crutch into her “routine,” and she had the whole bar clapping. Then a few of the girls did a rendition of Brown Eyed Girl. Annnd this adorable old man with a hat with feathers all over it sang Sweet Caroline, and of course that’s a classic crowd favorite. One girl sang Sweet Home Alabama, but the first time she changed Alabama to Jacksonville Beach, (which just doesn’t fit.) THEN she changed it to California for the rest of the song?! It was so long winded and bizarre. There was this woman that was wayyy shorter than me that was all about getting one of the guys to dance with her. She just wanted to twirl and twirl. So that was entertaining as well. (But don’t we all wanna twirl sometimes?) We stayed until they closed, and then eventually went to two of Beth’s guy friends house, where I got to pick the satellite radio station on the ride home (which is my favorite thing to do,) and we played with the dog Charlie Brown (another dog! Another adorable name!) and watched Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives. I mean seriously, perfection because I know I’ve told y’all before how that’s another one of my favorite things, when people end up sitting around together just being. Simple. Love it.
Saturday was a fabulous blend of everything. Brunch at The Brick (mimosa, grits, and spinach & goat cheese Benedict – DELICIOUS.) Wandering around that area, in the little shops. Picked up some flowers from the Farmer’s Market. Race packet pick up at 1st Place Sports. A short venture to the outlet mall in St.Augustine. Icees from Race Trac! And eventually we headed out to Lemon Bar (which is technically in Neptune Beach) and M Shack (OMGsh obsessed – like Shake Shack obsessed, except it might’ve stolen its spot. I got the mushroom burger and onion rings and I was too full for a shake, but those all sounded fabulous too.) It was just a laid back enjoyable day. The sun was shining, it was breezy, the music and company were good – what more could you ask for?
Sunday was St.Patrick’s Day. We got up super early and headed out to Evergreen Cemetery for the St.Patty’s Day 5k! We saw the sun rise on our drive over. It was a fun, fast run – it was cool, shaded and flat. Basically the opposite of Tallahassee runs, haha. It was super fun. The first mile was reeeeally crowded, but after that it thinned out. Beth and I left soon after (you know how I love to stay, but hey like I said mercy of people who give me rides!) we finished because it was still an hour before any awards would start. Apparently we both won second place in our respective age groups! (We’re five months apart, so we’re not in the same age bracket right now.) But it was worth it because she took me to the most amazing breakfast place that I’d heard everyone raving about. Metro Diner. (I had the cinnamon raisin pecan french toast, with hash-browns and Snickerdoodle coffee, but seriously all the choices were amazing – fried chicken Benedict served on a waffle?! Banana split waffle with pineapple and icecream?! Omgshhh, definitely need to go back if you can’t hear the enthusiasm of my inner fat kid right now.) Then we kind of went all over the place on a sunglasses search, with no results.But I did find a dress to wear for St.Pat’s for like $11 – haha can’t beat that. And of course I wanted everything in the surf shops we went in (but what I’d want more is for that sun to come and stick around here, with warmer temps not this freeze warning junk!)
Later we went over to the girl’s house and hung out on the back deck drinking, chatting, jamming to Jimmy Buffett Pandora (and yes there was another dog involved!
Eventually we made moves to a bar called Culhane’s for some St.Patty’s Day celebrating. (Including more of my favorites – Guinness and Irish Car Bombs and BAGPIPES!) We met this guy who was a DJ for the radio station, and even though it was kind of dark and rainy-ish it was a great afternoon. Eventually I got a cab back to Beth’s place so my mind could come scoop me up so I could get back to Tallahassee. The cab ride was definitely interesting. Remember how my one roadtrip rule is “DO NOT DISCUSS DELIVERANCE!” ?! Well, what do you know, I’m telling the cab driver my story and he’s singing the banjo song over – myohmy. Then I just went and hung out with the dog again for a while til my mom got me and I got a kid’s meal from Bojangles. Obviously this weekend was full of friends, food, and fun.