Day #3 (June 26th):

I woke up and felt really refreshed. I finally got a good night’s sleep. Maybe I just sleep better on snowman sheets? All I know is that when I went to bed Jacob was playing video games and when I woke up he was still playing the same video games. I think I got eight hours so it wasn’t like I slept ten hours or anything. He is just an early riser. I think I was up by 9:30. I made sure to shower, pooped twice, and packed up my car and put new ice in my cooler. I grabbed lunch with Jacob a little after one. I got the buffet at a Mexican place called Mi Fiesta. It was really good food. I ate way too much. Afterwards I hit the road. I had a three-hour drive to Pittsburgh.

All morning I was in contact with Katelyn and she kept asking me when I was going to leave. I wasn’t sure if something was up or if she was just being overly concerned. It turned out her sister, who I was supposed to be staying with, kind of freaked out and didn’t want me staying at her apartment anymore. Katelyn, being the amazing person she is, ended up booking us a hotel for the two days that I would be there. It was already done by the time I hit the road. I offered to pay but she wouldn’t let me. I got into Pittsburgh around 5 PM that night. I gave her a big hug and I settled into the hotel. I hadn’t seen her since I graduated from college. The hotel was pretty close to the city. It was only a few miles away from downtown. I found out she had been driving an hour to work so this was a lot better for both of us.

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Katelyn was starving so we headed to a part of the city where they have vegetarian options and dive bars. We ate at a place called Double Wide. I wasn’t really hungry so I got an appetizer and drank two beers. She got a few mixed drinks and had a sandwich. We chatted the entire time we did. We had a lot of stories and catching up to do. I swear every time I see Katelyn she just gets prettier and prettier. I still shoot myself in the foot for not ever thinking of her like that when I was in college. She’s such an amazing person and extremely pretty that even as I type these words I know they can’t even come close to being the correct words. That nothing will suffice how much I really think of her.

 

After dinner we strolled down the block to a real hole-in-the-wall. It’s basically just a door and the windows are blacked out. If you didn’t know it was there you would assume it was vacated. I liked the vibe of the place. It was dark and felt like an old timers bar. That was their theme. Since it was a Sunday and still pretty early there was no one there. Katelyn and I were still sharing stories but we included the bartender. Katelyn ended up explaining what I was doing there because I said I was from St. Louis. She also felt bad because she had to work tomorrow and I had to go to the baseball game by myself. It was funny because a random guy came in and gave the bartender, Danielle, tickets to tomorrow’s game. I was secretly hoping she’d give them to me because I hadn’t bought mine yet. That would have been super lucky if it had happened. Danielle actually gave me some great tips on places to check out in St. Louis because she had some friends that lived out here. We also traded stories about ballparks we had been to. She also enjoys seeing all the different ballparks and enjoys traveling. She gave me her number in case I needed someone to walk the bridges with or in case I got lost tomorrow. I thought it was a really nice gesture.

We only had two drinks each at this place. I think it was called Acacia. But I had looked over the prices for drinks and kind of wanted to head out. Katelyn paid the bill at Double Wide and I glanced at it and saw it was over $50. I made sure I paid the $30 at Acacia. I guess another endearing thing about Katelyn is that A. She’s a whiskey drinker. B. The girl can drink. She wasn’t feeling anything. She wanted to show me the city from the mountains so we headed across the bridges and up the mountains.

View From The Mountains

View From The Mountains

I got some great photos. My phone was almost dead because of taking so many photos. It just zaps the battery life. By the time we were finished I want to say it was only around 9:30 PM or so but we decided we’d head back. I thought it was still early enough to go out and buy a bottle or wine or a bottle of whiskey but she told me they stopped selling at 9. I was like crap! I decided it was okay to use one of the bottles of wine I had bought from Ohio and we drank the majority of it in the hotel room and just chatted about life and all kinds of personal stuff. She had to be up at 6 AM in the morning for work so I made sure to call it a night at midnight. I had planned to write then, but I was just enjoying the moment and the company that I didn’t want to sit back and reflect on what was going on in the present.

Day 4 (June 27th):

Katelyn woke up early as expected. I wasn’t sure if or when I would see her later so I woke up briefly to talk with her before I fell back asleep for a few hours. I can only imagine how tired she was because I didn’t sleep well at all. I remember deciding to get up and buy my tickets and get ready. I thought the adrenaline of city driving and a new ballpark would get me going but I really just wanted to sleep another hour. I ended up leaving for PNC around 11 AM. It was a 12:35 game. I got there in plenty of time and didn’t have a difficult time finding parking for it being my first time. I was super thrilled that I bought tickets for $14 and parking for $15. It’s still funny to me that a lot of ballparks the parking is more expensive than the tickets. Either way I walked completely around the ballpark and got a million photos. I then went inside and did a lap around the ballpark getting more photos. I had a half hour to waste and I was hungry so I decided to get my souvenir drink and nachos. It was only $16. For ballpark food that is pretty good. I’m used to between 18-20 dollars.

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The game atmosphere and the views were amazing. PNC is definitely one of my favorite ballparks that I’ve been to. There’s a lot of added value and the operations and entertainment groups there are outstanding. With that being said, I found myself fighting to keep my eyes open. I love baseball and I can enjoy any teams playing. My biggest problem was that I was just exhausted. I was going nonstop on the road and focusing on everything. I am highly attentive. I don’t just look at something I observe it. I don’t just listen to people when they speak but I analyze it for tone and hidden meanings. It takes a lot out of you. I also didn’t sleep very well and the game went extremely long. It almost went four hours.

I always try to watch the entire game and this game was close and entertaining. I really wanted to see the Pirates win so I could see them raise the Jolly Roger flag. It just wasn’t in the cards. It was a small struggle getting out of the traffic initially from the game but then I was good. Everyone seemed to be heading south and I needed to head north.  I met Katelyn back at the hotel around 5 and we ordered a pizza. I could just tell that we both were pretty tired but were trying to power through it. I had it delivered to our room so we could lie on our beds and watch TV while we waited and rested some.

After we ate and felt up for it we headed back to the mountains. I got some more photos with the sun out this time of the city up in the hills. We then went to this thing that essentially is a box cart that takes you from the top of the mountain to the bottom where the shops and restaurants and bars are.

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We walked across the bridge and then walked through parts of downtown until we came to Point State Park. It has a fountain there that shoots up water and the sun was setting into the hills. I probably took the best photo of the entire trip there. It was gorgeous. It was great to just sit down and take in the sites with Katelyn. At the same time I was posting some of these photos, her friends were getting jealous because she hadn’t taken them on a tour of the city like she had done for me. I felt special and also knew this would lead her friends to going out and doing more stuff with her so I was happy for her.

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Fountain at Point State Park

We did some more walking through downtown and took a stroll by the water to check out the art that they had. It was really cool. We walked right by the stadium again and got a drink at a bar right across from the main entrance into the stadium. Again these drinks were super expensive so we each only got one and then headed back. The casual conversations had been said and I think we both sensed that our time together was coming to an end so I made my last few attempts at some deep personal opinions and advice. We headed back to the box cart and up the hill back towards her car. She had to work again in the morning and I was scheduled for another travel day towards Hagerstown, Maryland.

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Published by Brian Argetsinger