Monday, January 28, 2013


We've been back in Chicago for a little over a week. It's been so very nice to be home.

It's been a little tough getting used to the weather. We haven't experienced winter type weather since last February. Our blood has thinned since we've only been in 90 degree weather for the last 11 months.

Please know, I'm not complaining. Just explaining why we've been such weenies the last week.

Here's Jeannie bundled up before we went to the movies on Friday.

She's so bundled up that she can't hear anything I say and I can't understand anything she's telling me.

Yesterday, we went to our friend Oscar's new restaurant, Rickshaw Republic.

It's an Indonesian restaurant in Lincoln park. In fact, Oscar told us it's the only Indonesian restaurant currently in Chicago.

We became friends with Oscar when he was our photographer at our wedding. He has such great style and vision that we knew his new place would be very cutting edge.

The decor is very cool.

The food was very innovative and delicious.

We got an order of chicken satay.

And, tempeh satay.

And, the coconut rice with beef rendang.

And, a submarine fish cake.

It was a really fantastic lunch and so nice to see Oscar and his family.

Go visit Oscar's Rickshaw Republic Restaurant. It's at the corner of Lincoln, Halsted and Fullerton. 2312 N. Lincoln, to be exact.

You'll love it!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, January 19, 2013

River Road...

We had a super fun time with Becca in New Orleans.  We took her to a bunch of fun places.

On Monday, we watched a mini parade through the streets and then went to Acme Oyster House.  I have to say, the best food I had all week was at Acme.  We had grilled Oysters that tasted as good as anything I've eaten in the past six months.  Those oysters were amazing.  They also had a breaded fish po boy that was incredibly delicious.

After Acme, we went on a ghost tour through the French Quarter.  Lots of fun.  Jeannie and Becca bought Mardi Gras masks and they wore them throughout the tour.
They wore them because they were fun, but it was a chilly night and it turned out they kept them on to keep their faces warm.

When the tour was finished, we took Becca to Cafe Du Monde.

No matter what time of day, the beignets are always phenomenal.

On Tuesday we drove out to River Road and visited some of the old plantations.

Our favorite was Houmas House.
We've been there before, but didn't go inside to take the tour.

I'm so glad we took the tour.  That place is so cool and amazing.

They have all sorts of cool items to see and touch.  That's right, as long as you're not some weirdo who loves caressing furniture, you can touch a table owned by James K. Polk.
Or a clock owned by Marie Antoinette.
Or, a chair built by Aaron Burr.
Or a coat rack owned by Thomas Jefferson.
We had the best tour guide.   Her name was Susan.
We have traveled all over the world and Susan was one of the best tour guides I've ever had.
Go to Houmas House and take the tour and ask for Susan.

Truly, one of the most enjoyable houses I've visited.  It ranks right up there with Thomas Jefferson's house.

On our drive down River Road, we stopped to eat at the B & C Seafood Market.

We had shrimp po boys and fried okra.  Very tasty.  Jeannie and Becca posed with one of the many alligators in the room.  It was a real stuffed alligator.
In the evening, we stayed in a cabin on the grounds of the Oak Alley Plantation.
Oak Alley is a stately mansion that is known for the phenomenal oak trees lined up along the walkway to the river.
It was really cool to stay on the grounds of the plantation and to be able to walk around everywhere at night.  It was very picturesque and a little eerie.
The next day we had a good old fashioned southern breakfast at the Oak Alley Restaurant and then took the tour of the house.  Such a beautiful house and breathtaking scenery on the property.

It was a great little trip and we were glad we got to show Becca so much of New Orleans.

We got home late Wednesday and the first thing I did was order a pizza from D'Agostino's.

It's great to be home!

Monday, January 14, 2013

New Orleans...

We're off the ship.

Our contract ended yesterday.  We get a two month break before we head out again.

It was a great contract.  We really had a fun time.

It's always nice to be done.  There are so many things about land life that you get used to not having.  Space is the big one.  So are cell phones, internet service and unlimited walking around outdoors time.  I'm not confined to one area with an "all aboard time".

Please know, I'm not complaining.  I have one of the greatest jobs and work for one of the coolest companies in America.   It's just funny to have complete freedom after being confined for 4 months.

We're spending a couple of days in New Orleans with our friend Becca and then headed back to Chicago.

Here are some photos from our last few days on the ship and from our last few days in the Big Easy.

We met up in Cozumel with the Second City cast members from the Dawn and the Pearl.

It was fun swapping ship stories and comparing show running orders.

We had a night of games where Megan brought the biggest Reese's I've ever seen.
I'm not sure what she was trying to do there.  Maybe she was trying to make it look like she was going to eat it, but that Peanut Butter Cup was bigger than her head.

We had our final cast meal at the sushi restaurant.

Brett's friend Jessica joined us.

I mentioned that we did a Fantasy Basketball league for the cast.  We ended the season on the last day on the ship.  We all have funny ship names.  My team is The Happy Ship, which is making fun of what the former Cruise Director always called our ship.  Jeannie's team name is Bernardo Sings which is in honor of an off key singing cook.  Brett is Deck 3 Dribble City.  That's because he lives on Deck 3 and we play basketball.  Megan is named Market Cafe Crepe Station in honor of Brett's nightly dessert.  Mark is Team Bork, making fun of our Cruise Director in Hawaii and Rich is Gulf of Mexico Elements.

During the intermission of the Murder Mystery we handed out the prizes.  I got first.

The real battle was for second and third place.  Brett and Jeannie swapped places back and forth all season.  On our second to last night, Brett was winning by one.  Jeannie's team pulled off an amazing comeback and swiped 2nd place away from him.

Again, such a fun contract.  It will be nice to be home for 2 months.  I'm really looking forward to spending a lot of quality time in Chicago.  Can't wait!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Easy Rider, Vertigo, Dr. Strangelove...

We've still been doing the podcast for The Thursday Evening Movie Club.  Have you been listening?

It hasn't been as frequent as we'd like, but the episodes are still popping up.  A lot of people think we have tons of free time when we're on the ships.  How hard could it be to get 5 people together when you all live within 300 feet of each other?  Well, it's tough.  Take my word for it.

We get back to Chicago in 10 days and I've already started scheduling weekly episodes.  So, they'll be coming fast and furious soon.

Here are the episodes we've done recently.

Vertigo.  Great, funny episode with some of our singer friends.

French Connection

Dr. Strangelove.  Get ready for a lot of arguing.  This is the way most conversations go with our cast.

Easy Rider.  Jeannie's family is on board.

Next weeks episode is Lawrence of Arabia.