Hey There, Old Friends!

Pardon me for the impromptu, unannounced, month-long blog hiatus. It’s not my fault Xfinity added every episode of The Wire to its online database…

Overall, the last month has been fairly uneventful and increasingly calculated. Pete travels out of town for work on Sunday nights, works his ass off all week, then returns home late Friday night where we are reunited in the warmth of his exhaustion. 

We always try to do 'something' on the weekends, which usually end up looking like this:

Bike somewhere.

Admire sunset.

Remain sweaty all evening.

Take a small nap at table.

Remain asleep while posing for a picture. 

Go home early and pass out. 

Ok, it's not that severe. But we are pretty heinous at going out. Honestly, we'd prefer to just hang out with each other at home. I get this idea in my head that we need to 'go out' because that's what people do on the weekends, but we always have a better time chilling in the Winnebago. It's way cheaper and far more relaxing. And these days, Pete needs as much rest as he can get. 

To give you an idea of the hours he's pulling: think of the typical work week; double that; then add ten more hours. It's intense.

I, on the other hand, do a lot more dicking around. Mostly indoor activities because Texas is, like, really hot in the summer. Time sure does fly when you exhaust all the decent movies on XfinityTV and read every single post on Hipster Puppies

Sure, I work too. Around 25 hours a week. And most nights, it's not very lucrative because 1.) I work at a restaurant and restaurants pay below minimum wage; and 2.) I work at a hotel restaurant in Austin, TX- a freaking gem of a foodie town. Who the hell wants to eat the grub from the hotel kitchen? Actually, the food's not too shabby, but that's besides the point.

The point is: I make far below the poverty line, pay every single one of Pete and I's bills/expenses and still put money into savings at the end of the month. Sure, we make a lot of sacrifices for our low cost of living that many would turn their noses at: small living quarters; spiders in the bathroom; no immediately accessible running water; a tiny fridge; washing dishes with squirt bottles; handling our own urine disposal. (I'm sorry, I've been drinking...).

But, by golly, I just love this lifestyle. Simple. Stress free. Healthy. Sustainable.    

So why the hell is Pete working like a dog? Well, just because we live like trailer trash doesn't mean we don't have dreams, man! Every penny Pete makes is going straight to savings (not stocks!) for our future endeavors.  And we have big plans! In fact, exciting news is on the horizon, but you'll just have to wait for that announcement. (Don't tell anyone Mom!).

I think the best part of the past month was my mini-vacation to Dallas. I know, I know. You're thinking, "Dallas? Really?" I thought the same thing. But as a Hilton employee, I scored a free hotel room at the HUGE Hilton Anatole and it was worth every step I had to take to get to it in the 110 degree heat.

Already approaching 95 degrees at 8:30am, I enjoyed a sweaty walk to the Amtrak station in Austin. The six-hour train ride was rather pleasant. This other chick and I shared an entire car to ourselves for almost three hours. I made myself quesadillas for the trip and they were delicious. I listened to two-year-old playlists on the iPod I forgot I owned while gazing out the window at the barren, drought-ridden Texas countryside. I told myself before the trip that I would see a Winnebago Lesharo...and, no shit, I did! I could have just stopped right there, claiming the train ride as my vacation, because truly, it was great to just 'get out' for a small while.

I arrived in Dallas and, I'll be damned, it was hotter than hell! I could have easily just hopped in a cab to get to the hotel, but I was determined to use public transit.

Waiting 25 minutes for the train...
Though steamy and a bit of a wait, the train was as simple as most and it only cost me $1.75. Afterwards I had about a mile walk to the hotel which truly sucked (although, I love a good challenge). Dallas is 100% unfriendly to pedestrians. You are expected to drive. I walked in a ditch along the side of a major road, part of which was muddy. Good thing I had a sun-brella with me!

I checked in to the hotel and got to the room, which was lovely, especially for the price!

The only negative was the view. I suppose they reserve these interior rooms for "team members-who-don't-pay-shit-to-stay-here-so-they-won't-mind-if-their-window-faces-the-hallway."

And I'd have to agree. I didn't have much care for a view. I was more interested in immediately getting my booty to the pool bar. Four-for-the-price-of-two screwdrivers later and I was ready for Pete's arrival.

He got in late, but we still made the most of our hotel. Rather than venturing out into the city (we're usually pro-city exploring, but here we were just looking for a retreat), we opted for one of the Hilton's restaurants. I suppose people do want to eat at hotels from time to time...

The Media Bar and Grill was the bomb. Awesome crab dip (I know, I'm from Maryland. It's blasphemy to get crab anywhere else!), a phenomenal halibut sandwich and a tasty spiced Moroccan beef salad. Yum yum. Oh, and  a bottle of wine. Of course.

The rest of the evening we spent perusing the hotel. That place is like an Asian history museum. A plethora of artifacts, sculptures and paintings adorn the hallways. There are a lot of Buddhas:

And comically-sized chairs too:

What's great about the Winnebago lifestyle is that it totally ups your appreciation for the little things. For instance, messaging bars of soap:

For real!?
Perhaps the most rewarding part of the trip (besides being with my main man) was the oh-so luxurious bed. Pete and I sleep on a futon mattress that we cut and sized to fit Pete's homemade bed frame. I actually really enjoy our bed and find it rather comfortable. But in comparison to a hotel bed, that futon is like lying on a stack of lumpy Beanie Babies. Bring on the king-sized comfort!

I assure you that I'm wearing a red sweater in this photo.