Monday, December 12, 2005

Whole Foods is a Winter Wonderland

I went to the ice skating rink at Whole Foods over the weekend. The flagship store at 6th & Lamar has built a rink on the top floor of the store, an open air venue that normally houses tables and chairs for patrons to sit and enjoy a meal while overlooking a slice of downtown Austin. I thought it was a wonderful idea for a town where there are only two ice skating rinks and not a large amount of interest in either. Please, no hate mail from those of you who may actually skate on occasion. Let's be honest. Austin pays more attention to sports that can be performed outdoors than indoors. When a body of water in our area freezes over enough to be skated on, we better all be praying double-time because the end is near.

My friend's daughter, Marcella, skated on both Saturday and Sunday. She is a natural on skates: smooth, balanced, graceful. So unlike what I would be on ice. We all know I'm clumsy. I fall for no reason so I feel absolutely no pressing need to step out onto slick ice balanced only on a knifeblade attached to the bottom of a boot. Why tempt fate? My mother called while I was at the rink and was horrified until I assured her I was on dry land wearing my regular shoes. She mentioned broken bones at least twice. I promised her I was not flailing around on the ice like the brave pre-teen girl who, despite her windmilling and wobbly ankles, managed to mostly stay upright. I enjoyed watching the skaters go 'round and 'round, though. It made me think of the time I was in NYC and hung out for a bit at Rockefeller Center, watching the skaters. Come to think of it, the ice at Rockefeller Center isn't much larger than the rink at Whole Foods. I still don't know how come it looks so big on television.

The weather was great for skating. This morning I heard Lance Armstrong talk about trying to describe Austin weather to some of his Team Discovery guys who were in town training. He said "last weekend was 80 (degrees), this weekend was 70 and everything in between was 20". They just didn't get it until they rolled out of bed to ride on a windy, chilly 40ยบ morning. Lance said he sat that ride out. He is retired, after all.

The cool breeze, sunshine and ice skating finally has me in the holiday spirit. Yes, sunshine. This is Central Texas. Normally we can wear shorts on Christmas day although most of the time it's with a long sleeved tee shirt or sweatshirt. I've started my Christmas shopping and have finalized my travel plans for the holiday. I am trying to unearth my Christmas cards from whichever unpacked box they are currently living in so that I can write them all out only to realize I'm missing addresses for a third of my friends. I keep in touch so much better by email or blog. (So if you want a card from me you probably should e me your snail mail addy.) I've even thought about putting up decorations, nixed the idea, thought about it again and nixed it again. I'll continue the internal debate until it's too late to do anything, thus in my own chaotic way resolving the To Have Twinkle Lights or Not argument.

How was your weekend? Do you have your shopping finished or are you last minute like me?


Anonymous said...

Bahumbug. Santa is dead. Rudolph was in your dad's last batch of jerky. Hallmark is richer, while we've all gotten poorer for paying ridiculous postage fees for ridiculously over-priced cards. I can't believe you're looking forward to a 20 hour car ride. Best take some prep-H with you.

Frederick Reinhardt said...

"Santa" is an anagram for Satan! Seems appropriate...have you seen the picture of my child sitting on Satan's lap! HAHAHA

Kaya said...

Wow, need some serious attitude adjustments! Of course the holiday is over commercialized, but it is still the #1 day of the year that families make an effort to get together, regardless of the tempers that may flare when you gather the relatives together. It's the one time of the year that people give you something, usually wrapped in festive paper, and you are appreciative even as you're planning to regift it. It's one out of two days that many people view as the most important religous holidays in the year.

Santa may be a folk tale, Rudolph a cute but slightly creepy animated show and tinny carol, Hallmark the guru of the card sending crowd and yes, my last batch of chili was indeed made from Bambi...The drive to El Paso may be a buttnumbing event but ya know, it's worth it when we drive up and Frank's parents are so damn happy to see us. Christmas is about giving, about family, about the friends you love as family and about love. It's the season for mistletoe and kisses, for hugs and gift giving, for heartfelt sentiments in pretty cards and for people to take a step back from the harsh realities of our world and be thankful for the small blessings we have.

I suggest you pour yourself a cup of holiday cheer (liberally spiked) and reflect back on what you should be celebrating instead of grousing about things you can't change. Commercialism will never die, even if your dreams have.

Anonymous said...

Retract, release, relate, relax! HAHAHA. Someone needs a hug.

Kaya said...

Please come hug me.

TwinKim said...

I'm so glad I'm not the only one who has not finished their shopping! I haven't decorated, either, even though I'm hosting the Doerge Clan on Christmas Day. I'm hoping that we can put the tree up on Saturday morning before Mike goes to bed (he's working every night this week) and I plan to shop in the afternoon.

I, for one, love Christmas cards even if they are over-priced. Hasn't Anonymous ever heard of the after-Christmas sale?? I get my best cards the day after Christmas!

Missychel said... I finally decided on Sunday to put up the tree and decorate after being at World Market and finding these really cool safari animal decorations. TOO CUTE!! After spending about $50 bucks to purchase my own personal Noah's arch.....the tree is up and decorated. That's as far as I am going. Every year I say I am going to blow it off but I guess it is the old mexican catholic upbringing....the guilt sets in and I do it anyway.

So after all my hard work I got home yesterday from the gym to find that my bitch of a dog was bored or doesn't like cute safari animals so decided to go on a poaching spree.....she killed 2 lions, punctured and elephant, ate the head and tail off a kangaroo. The Frogs must be poisonous frogs because there were 3 on the ground but all unharmed.

So now the bottom 2 feet of my tree is lights only.....whatever!!

I also have a very busy week planned. So far I have been to a surprise birthday party and a date with my beloved hubby....PF Chang's last night...YUM!! Tonight is the Austin Fit party which may be a bit chilly but isn't that what cocktails are for? Friday is my work party at the Hyatt...AKA..get dolled up. I am even going all out for an up-do at Siren's Salon. The only bad thing about the party is that it is on Friday night. I will be home early and sober since we will be up bright and early to run 25K with Austin Fit.....Gosh...the list goes on and on. What ever is a social guru to do? :)

Well I hope to slow down and take a break soon.....or maybe not!!!

TwinKim said...

Too bad about the massacre. I'll have to shop World Market myself. I've been looking for a rhino ornament.

I can't do it this year because I didn't plan ahead, but next year I'm having a "Trim Our Tree" party. I've done it once before and it was so much fun! I'll invite all of our friends/family to help us decorate our tree by bringing an ornament that reflects their personality. Last time, I had a pair of men's bikini briefs in stripper blue, a little tiny skunk, a minature cat o'nine tails whip and a number of other equally intriguing ornaments. Even some traditional ones, LOL!

This time may be more tame but still fun and you get a whole new set of Christmas ornaments to keep for your own.