Monday, July 18, 2011

Day 194: Jailbird

Blogging every day was much easier in the fall/winter when I was in school and used it as a way to avoid doing homework. I shall use this post as a way to recap my incredibly eventful weekend.

Friday evening my friend, Kaitlin, flew in to town from her respective homestead in BC. I totally love this girl. While slightly apprehensive since we'd never spent more than a dinner or an afternoon together in BC, and were now facing a whole weekend, it turned out fabulously. Some friends you just don't miss a beat with, you know?

As she came out the doors I was so super excited and we both squealed like little girls and hugged and laughed. I think internally we knew this weekend was going to be fabulous!!

Friday night, we met up with Jadah and went to a delicious exclusively vegetarian restaurant in downtown Calgary. It was incredible (as always)! While on our walk to another friend's house, we encountered some extremely inebriated guys who asked if we would "skip" down the street with them. Let me just express how much I love Stampede in Calgary and the ridiculous antics that all seem to partake in at this time of year.

Saturday was such a fun day. Kait and I got up fairly early for breakfast at one of my favourite breakfast places, Diner Deluxe. We enjoyed delicious food and coffee. I took her on a little Calgary tour and then we went shopping. I got two dresses and a pair of shoes for under $60. Kaitlin also scored some wicked deals. It is important at this point to mention that at the TNA store we were helped by a super sweet girl who happened to have big bandages on her face. I'm not mentioning this to be cruel or anything, but later this story will come into play.

After getting ready to go out for the evening (we bought tickets to the Cowboys tent for Stampede), we were driving to Jade's and we drove past a girl in a car who had big bandages on her face too. This led to a purely speculative conversation on whether or not people were getting bottled at parties during the Stampede. Naturally, me being me, my anxiety levels rose and I was worried that someone this evening would happen to get in an unfortunate fight at the Cowboys tent and that they'd get bottled. I pushed these thoughts aside for a couple drinks and some barbequed chicken. We all traipsed over to the Cowboys tent and and had a really fun night. Tons of people dressed in cowboy/girl gear, loud music, and incredibly overpriced drinks (aka the water I bought was $4.75). While exiting the girls washroom, Kaitlin and I ran directly into the girl from the TNA store with the bandages on her face. Kaitlin (very politely) asked if she'd mind sharing her story of how she hurt her face. She definitely was not bottled in a bar fight during Stampede. She actually had an unfortunate accident where she happened to faint while on a flight of stairs -- poor girl! Mystery solved. I had more faith in the people of Stampede than to be angry types. Usually everyone is so happy at Stampede time.

Sunday we both slept in and got ready and then went out for lunch. We enjoyed a super leisurely late lunch. Then we headed to the Stampede grounds for Kaitlin's first-ever Stampede experience! We took the train and took in all the sites. Indian Village, the Agriculture tent, all the little animals, the BMO Centre, etc. We wandered around for a few hours, ate some mini donuts, commented on many people's unfortunate choices of attire. We decided to head out of the grounds for dinner and along the way saw that Mariana's Trench was doing their soundcheck on the Coca-Cola Stage. My inner 13-year-old girl freaked out. I totally LOVE Mariana's Trench. No, for serious. Love. Sigh.

Anyways, so we stuck around and watched their soundcheck. I was feeling good about this and decided to post a picture of them on the stage to my Twitter. Right after this happened I saw that the Calgary Stampede had tweeted saying if we could find them at this location (with a picture attached) that the next 5 people would get FREE tickets to the Kenny Chesney concert that night. I opened the pic and knew exactly where they were. I said to Kaitlin, "Free Kenny Chesney tickets for tonight! This way! Run!" She, being the easy-going girl that she is, just ran after me. Well, we were one of the five, because we got free tickets! It was incredible! Twitter is quite possibly one of the best inventions. I heart social networking! So the concert started 30 minutes after we won the tickets. So we hustled on over to the Saddledome and got in our seats. I was a little bit disappointed that by winning the tickets I was missing the Mariana's Trench concert, but this was also possibly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that I couldn't pass up. Plus, capping off Stampede with Kenny Chesney is pretty swoon-worthy. We were also a little disappointed that seeing Kenny Chesney meant missing Doc Walker playing in the Nashville North tent. However, Doc Walker ended up being one of two opening acts for Kenny Chesney!!! How was our luck so incredible on Sunday? Seeing Mariana's Trench doing soundcheck, winning Kenny Chesney tickets AND having Doc Walker open for him. AMAZING. So we country'd it up at the concert, sang along to all the songs, and left feeling pretty good. As we got closer to the train we realized the fireworks show was about to start so we stuck around and waited for the fireworks and then headed home. What an absolutely incredible day! Probably one of the best Stampede days I have ever had in my life. And that means a lot, because as a 14-year-old I met The Moffatts at Stampede. So yeah, big day.

Today Kait, Jade and I headed out to Canmore for a hike. Gorgeous. The blazing sun, the exercise that I am seriously craving and chats with two smart and fun girls. We saw pristine mountain lakes, a waterfall, two guys having an impromptu jam session with their guitars, sitting beside a crystal clear lake. So chill. What a perfect way to spend a last day in the Calgary area for Kaitlin. For dinner Kaitlin and I went to Peters' Drive-In, which is a Calgary staple, then headed to the airport for a drink before she took off to go back home. Now I sit here in a chilly, air-conditioned Starbucks recounting a truly astonishingly fun weekend.

Not sure a weekend will top this for quite some time. Thanks to Jade, Kaitlin and ALL the others that made this as enjoyable as it was.



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