Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Clark's Favorite Things 2014 (Part III of VII)

As I mentioned on Monday, I haven't taken a vacation in a while. I don't have a really good reason for it either. I don't have a job that requires me to be available around the clock like a heart surgeon or anything like that. It's just one of those things that slips through the cracks. I guess.
For example, I actually planned on making a trip up to St. Paul, Minnesota when the Lightning played the Wild this season, figuring I could tie it in with a write-up for Raw Charge and also travel around the Twin Cities area and geek out on all kinds of Prince stuff. Prior to the big trip, a friend asked me, "I thought you were planning a trip up to Minnesota. Do you have your plane tickets and hotel reservations?" I said, "Nah, that's not 'til October." She said, "November is next week." "Oh."
Yep, I forgot to take a vacation. I think maybe doing nice things for myself is not always a priority.
With that, here's my list of favorite places to vacation.

I haven't been but I know it will be fun when I finally go. I will stroll right up to the front door of Paisley Park, Prince's recording studio and performance facility (in relatively nearby Chanhassen) and say, "Hi. I'm here to see Prince, if he's around, and all the Prince things." Whoever answers will be suitably charmed and let me in. I don't see a logical reason why that wouldn't happen. I'll also visit the First Avenue nightclub and...well, I guess that's about it. Huh. That should take one day. I'll spend the rest of the time swimming in lakes and going to Twins games.


I've been to Chicago dozens of times and in fact, it's where I spent my last vacation. There are millions of things to do and I know where stuff is and how to get there. Must visits include The Billy Goat Tavern, Second City, Portillo's and all the museums. I'm hesitant to mention Wrigley Field and the surrounding neighborhood because I'm kind of afraid of the impact that renovations currently taking place are going to have.

I'm somewhat reluctant to mention this one because if the wrong bunch of fools find out about it, they'll come down and ruin it. Notice the lack of condo towers, t-shirt shops and shitty "beach bars"? Exactly. There are places to stay, but they're mostly small, mom-and-pop operations (this one is my favorite). It's what I think the Gulf Coast of Florida must have been like during the '50s.


This is north of where I grew up and I haven't been there in years, but it's absolutely beautiful there. My uncle Dave lived there for a while and he operated a place that had a waterslide, a miniature golf course and an ice cream shop. He also rented boats and drove dune cars like the one seen in this photo. People would bring their off-road vehicles from all over to participate (and fail) in hill climbs. As a kid, it was a pretty incredible place to spend a summer. I gotta believe it's not too shabby now.

I love being home. Not that I have a high-stress job, but as soon as I pull into my driveway, I can feel myself relax. It's the one place on the planet where I can do whatever I want, whenever I want. Every day I'm there is a vacation.

Well, this has been a corny, sappy, sepia-tinged, nostalgia-soaked edition of Favorite Things, hasn't it? All we need is some dickhead strumming an acoustic guitar to make us all throw up. Come back Friday. Things will be a tad more raucous, I promise.

No comments: