the wonderful world of veena.

26 January 2014

3 of 52: a fun mother-daughter date.

This past Monday was MLK Day, and since my mother had a holiday from work, we decided to spend our afternoon at the Grizzlies game [my father had a holiday as well, but he chose to skip the game and go for a movie instead]. The Grizz always have a home game on MLK and, in conjunction with the National Civil Rights Museum, present the annual National Civil Rights Sports Legacy Awards to their chosen honourees. This year's recipients were Bernard King and Jojo White, and Dikembe Mutombo, a past recipient who was unable to attend the festivities, was also there to belatedly accept his award.

Since the game was at 4pm, we decided to make a day of it, beginning with a late lunch at Cafe Ole in Cooper Young. I used to frequent the Ole during my Rhodes days but have not been in quite some time, and my mother had never heard of it, so we decided to check it out. I wasn't sure quite what to expect, what with the holiday and all, but I certainly was not prepared to walk in and be the only ones in the restaurant. And then I realised that it was nearly 1.45 in the afternoon, so it didn't seem quite as crazy.

It was fun to have the whole place to ourselves, and we had a nice little mother-daughter lunch. We stuffed ourselves with chips and salsa and shared the chimichangitas - two half-size chimis, one chicken and one beef - and the calabasitas - an assortment of veggies in a cream sauce. It was the perfect amount for each of us, and it was all quite yummy. The rice that accompanied the chimichangitas was only ok, but the rest of the food more than made up for it [and also, I'm picky about my rice at Mexican restaurants].

From there, we decided to go ahead and head downtown. It was a beautiful day outside - I was walking around in short-sleeves - so we had ourselves a nice little stroll from our parking lot to the Forum. Bonus: because we were so early - we arrived around 2.45pm - we got prime parking in the lot we like right behind Jerry Lee Lewis'. Always makes my day better when I find some rockstar parking.

If you've been in the Forum recently, you'll have noticed that they've moved the Grizzlies Den [the souvenir shop] out into the north side of the entrance lobby, and the old Den is now what appears to be a super fancy lounge. Because I've not bought any Grizzlies swag in a few years, and since we had plenty of extra time and the place was still pretty quiet, we decided to have a look around.

I was particularly excited, because the scarves that were given away at the previous home game were on sale for $15, so obviously I picked up one for myself. We also got a t-shirt for me, one for my mother, a pint glass for me, and a shot glass for my father.

We slowly made our way up to our seats and got settled in. I love getting to the arena early and watching in fill in as others arrive and watching some of the guys just shoot around. We have a house band at the Forum, so they played a few "Memphis" songs for those of us who were already in our seats.

I always love watching Grizz home games, and this one was no different. The referees were generally awful, as per usual, and we had trouble hitting free throws, again as per usual, and there were a few questionable coaching calls, but the atmosphere at those games is great. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: I love how the team has embraced the city, and I love how the city has embraced the team.

And although the Grizzlies lost the game in the end, we had fun. Our lunch was great, we attended our first game of the season, and we got to see our boys grit and grind once again. Sure, it was a game we should have won, but after getting to spend the day with my mother, it's tough to get down about it for too long.

Oh, and we topped off the excursion with some frozen yogurt at YoLo on the way back home.

other highlights included: feeling productive again; my father tried - and loved! - my lasagna; got started on some much-needed blog maintenance; family lunch at Kwik Chek on Friday; father-daughter date to see American Hustle; an encouraging Saturday run; scored a Kindle-version of The Jungle [Upton Sinclair] FOR FREE; back-to-back Grizz wins over the Rockets.

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