Day 1 – Friday, May 26, 2017
Memorial Day weekend 2017 was a blast! My friend Brandon asked a bunch of us if we wanted to head over to Walla Walla for a long weekend getaway, and who am I to say no to a trip to wine country! We were planning to relax, hit some wineries and breweries, and go to our friend Shawn’s 50th birthday party!
There was just that little bit of a planning hurdle… An issue, because I couldn’t drive that Friday. You see, I had a colonoscopy first thing that morning. Yep, that’s right. Even though I am only in my early forties, my family history has cursed me – my mom and great grand-father both had colon cancer at age 50; my GGF died at age 50 too from his cancer. So I get to enjoy this joyful rite of passage every 5 years! More often if I have polyps! So much YAY! Sorry if this is so TMI… Seriously though, get those colonoscopies – they suck, but it is better than dying an early, painful death. Ok, that’s it for the public service announcements. On to some troublemaking…
Luckily, my friend Lelani was game for a wine weekend too and we met up after I had finished my procedure, eaten some breakfast and taken a shower. She generously chauffeured my heavily drugged up butt (no pun intended) down to the rendezvous point with Brandon and Joel, where we piled into the back seat of Brandon’s SUV. I brought along my favorite pillow and snoozed most of the way over, including sleeping through the giant Memorial Day weekend traffic jam on the mountain pass! Drugged travel may just be my new favorite thing – I slept through almost all of it!
Stopping for gas – I look so conscious!
We stopped in Ellensburg and went to the Iron Horse Brewery for lunch, although I have no real recollection of my lunch or beer there. Blame that whole drugged up thing. And yes, the doctor told me no alcohol, so don’t tell him or my mom I cheated… I do remember the food and the beer were delicious. I remember we sat at a table by the window, so that’s something right? We piled back in the car, and we set off driving the rest of the way to Walla Walla. By we, I mean Brandon was driving. And I went back to sleep for a longer nap!
Our other friend Paula met us there and our party was almost complete! We met at the Burwood Brewing Company, a brewery that is in a collection of buildings right next door to the Walla Walla airport. It is a very cute setup; the other buildings have wineries and breweries, so it is a perfect area to spend some time. (Note: while writing this post, I looked up Burwood and it seems they moved locations.) We had a beer at Burwood (the first one had long since worn off and I was awake now!) and sat out in the sunshine soaking up the warmth. I’m sure my friends had to tell me things that they had already discussed on the drive over, that I had slept through. Oh well!
The Walla Walla Airport Winery/Brewery complex
The gang at Burwood – sun!
We were by now getting hungry, so we made our way over to the hotel and got checked in and refreshed. We stayed right downtown at the Red Lion, so it was off on foot to find some grub! We wandered a little bit around downtown and settled on the Mill Creek Brewpub. The food was ok, but it didn’t knock it out of the park for me. I had a sandwich of some sort and a glass of Sauvignon Blanc. Clearly that whole day is a bit fuzzy… The conversation was good though, and it was great to catch up with my friends!
After dinner, we did a bit more wandering around town, although to be honest, downtown Walla doesn’t really have much of a night life, which surprised me. It is a college town after all, with a huge wine-making and and craft beer industry. We stopped for a drink at Whitehouse Crawford, a restaurant which is located in an old factory building – the architecture was amazing. I just had water there, so I can’t tell you how good the cocktails are, but they looked good! Our friend Shawn met us there, and we spent some time catching up chatting. It was great, since it has been years since I saw him! When we headed back to our rooms for the night, I crashed and slept deeply!
The gang at Whitehouse Crawford