Ben and I had a lovely mini-vacation yesterday! His company had purchased a block of tickets to the Indians vs the A's last night, and so we joined his coworkers for dinner and drinks before the game down at Jacob's Field. (We won! Go Tribe! ....and I've officially been living in Cleveland for a long time.) After the game, we headed over to The Corner Alley, which is this great combination of restaurant, martini bar and bowling alley. We'd been once before, and it works unexpectedly well - they've built the place such that there's really almost no noise from the lanes, and the dining area is visually separated from the bar-and-bowling area, and it's just a lot of fun. (And for the record - their creme brulee martini? Totally worth the drive downtown.) I haven't really been down to East Fourth much, and I was pleasantly surprised - the street is closed to car traffic between Euclid and Prospect and it has this almost European feel:
(Photo taken from http://www.east4thstreet.com/ - I managed to forget my camera last night.)
I had somehow missed the fact that The Corner Alley, the House of Blues, Lola and Flannery's (all places I've visited and enjoyed) are all right on the same little pedestrian street here.
The reason this excursion became a mini-vacation, though, was that we didn't have to schelp back to the east side at 1 am, but stayed at the Hyatt downtown (which is right across the street from the Corner Alley). Ben's boss has been singing the praises of Priceline, and we scored a room at this lovely hotel for $35! Click this link to see the hotel lobby - the first floor is all shops and restaurants, and the hotel itself is very quaint and 1920's looking on the outside (the doors to the rooms had letter slots! Soldered shut now, but still) yet the rooms themselves are modern and very nicely done.
We had a lovely time, and I was completely charmed by Cleveland's downtown - we joke about the Rust Belt, and there is some truth in that, but downtown is really revitalizing itself. We had dinner, watched the game, went out for drinks and then back to our hotel, all happening within half a mile of each other. And though there were definitely people around - last night's game was sold out - the crowds were still manageable, unlike what a similar evening would have been like in New York, for example. And the hotel room cost $35! Which still blows my mind. Anyway, we had a lot of fun, and I enjoyed the opportunity to play the tourist at home.
In knitting news, I am determined to finish the silk scarf this weekend - all that fringe makes me want to cry, but I will be brave, because it will be pretty. I've decided to nix the beading - I think I'd probably just end up smacking myself in the face with it, and really, that's no fun for anyone. And I'm on the hunt for some suitably drab dark gray sock yarn with which to knit Henry - I promised Ben a scarf last April, and, well, it's getting to be that time of year. The idea of a 452 stitch 24 row repeat terrifies me a little, but the pattern does seem to be one of those that seems way more complicated written down than it will actually be to knit. We'll see how it goes.
Edited to add: It seems I have unfairly slandered my beloved - once he saw a forest green yarn held against his gray coat, Ben decided to go for a little more color in his winter wardrobe. Which thrills me, because the mere thought of knitting an entire scarf in fingering weight dark gray yarn made my eyes hurt. So - thanks, Ben! (And sorry about the drab thing.) We'll be buying yarn tomorrow....