Thursday, May 08, 2008

Marching Ducks ...

So, it's almost Mother's Day ... and I think ... maybe ... I'm ready. We've celebrated this event with our moms in various ways over the years. Let's see ...

Mom and I have ridden up to Peoria to do the Par-A-Dice thing before. Mr. ThirtyWhat, the girls and I have hosted cookouts for both moms several years back. We've all gone to dinner. One year we did the breakfast thing. Seems like one year Dad and I maybe drove Mom down to Alton or St. Louis?

We're like everyone else, I suppose. Your plans automatically adjust based on what the kids are doing that weekend ... or based on which moms or grandmas can come at what time ... or based on if my brother decides to show up. Sigh. Life's just like that.

But this time around we're taking it easy. In the last couple years, going on these little riverboat road trips have started wearing me down. After a day trip like that, I really need a day to re-charge. If I'm not careful, I get run down ... my immune system dips ... and then ... pow. I end up sick. I'm not blaming Ameristar on my two week pneumonia experience ... but ...

Anyhow ... last year, Mom and I switched it up and went to lunch and a movie on Mother's Day. I think we even went shopping for a bit. It was a nice little change of pace ... something we'd never done before. I can't remember where we ate ... but I know we saw Georgia Rule. It was no where near the best movie I've ever seen ... but it was a chick flick. And just spending time with her was fun.

So this year, she's chosen "Baby Mama" as her flick of choice. I like Tina Fey ... I like Amy Poehler ... and ... I really like popcorn. So really ... what more could I ask for? I'm not sure where we'll do lunch ... seems like we may have gone to Lone Star last year ... maybe Fridays?

In the meantime, we need a few panels replaced on the privacy fence that goes across the driveway ... and the gate needs rebuilt. So I've got a call into our guy. Our lawn's been mowed once and now it's gone nuts. I've got dandelion stems high as an elephant's eye. Need to call our guy on that. We need to swap the battery out on the van and get it sold. I mean ... there are like 1,000 things on my plate ...

Just trying to get all these ducks in a row ...

All you life you had to stand in line
Still you're standing on your feet
All your choices made you change your mind
Now your calender's complete
Don't wait for answers
Just take your chances
Don't ask me why

Billy Joel - Don't Ask Me Why


  1. Have you ever done the day trip Par-A-Dice bus? I've wanted to get an opinion on if that is worthwhile. Unfortunately they don't allow you to ride the bus up then stay overnight.

  2. Well, as usual I can't just answer this is a short, concise way ... :)

    The short answer is no. My Mom's church used to take a day bus up to Par-A-Dice ... but ... I've never gone on it. We always just jumped in the car and drove whenever we wanted to go to Peoria. I think they charged to ride on it too ...

    BUT ...

    There's also a bus that leaves from Springfield that goes to Harrah's in St. Charles, MO two or three times a week ... and I think I've gone on it twice.

    Now, THAT bus is free to ride. You get on at the Capital City Shopping Center Parking lot ... I donno ... 8:30 or 9:00? They stop at Litchfield and pick up people ... I think they might also stop at Staunton. Maybe.

    Any case ... you get a coupon for $5 in free gambling credit just for riding. You get there about 11:00 or so ... we always got off and went directly to the buffet for lunch. Then ... you gamble till around 3:00 ... get back on the bus and come home.

    So, you're really only there ... what ... three or four hours? To me, the ride is so long ... it's getting to where it's just not enjoyable. But Mom LOVES it.

    It's a nice alternative ... if you're in the mood to gamble instead of drive. Plus ... with the price of gas ... I mean, common ...

    Oh ... and I don't think any of the bus trips go overnight ... OH .. and you'll also want to make SURE you're there when it's time to leave ... because they told us over and over that they DO leave people.

  3. Harrah's St. Louis lost our business the one time we went there. Never been back. We did like Moby's Fish Tales though. I'd go back to the Harvey's ( Harrah's owned ) in Lake Tahoe in a minute. The Harrah's in Joliet isn't bad - just no low limit tables.

    The Par-A-Dice bus is technically free. You pay $10 out of your comps but get that back in chips plus a buffet voucher. Leaves at 10 AM on Tuesday and Friday if I remember right. However the way they do it limits your play time. After getting there and doing lunch that eats into the floor time. I've never done it. Just wanted to see if you had so I could get your opinion. My play sessions tend to average 4, 6 or 8 hours depending on how things are going that day.

    Appreciate the other information.

  4. Iggy ... what happened at Harrah's in St. Louis to turn you off?

    You're right ... the whole bus thing usually takes away from your gambling time. The Harrah's bus didn't REQUIRE you to eat at the buffet ... but ... I think they gave you a $5 or $50 coupon for the buffet ... so most everyone went to eat.

    I guess I'd rather just jump in the car and go ... :)

  5. I wrote several big articles on the whole Harrah's St. Louis situation. Several of which could stand me not being lazy and going back and editing them for grammar etc. The short story is I'm very picky about how myself and others are treated. There was a minor ( turned into big ) problem there that wasn't resolved to my satisfaction. This was annoying enough for me not to want to ever go back. That and you don't get much hotel room for the price. Our Total Rewards comps had expired at the time. Many people refuse to gamble in Missouri do to their limit laws and other state gambling policies.

    I forgot to mention previously the Par-A-Dice bus takes off from K-Mart on Clear Lake.