January 21, 2005

Since they had tried to fix our alarm and couldn’t get it reset last night, they gave us passes for a free breakfast downstairs so we decided to go down and take advantage of that. I didn’t have much time because my meeting was rescheduled for this morning so I took off from there. The meeting was at 10:00 over in Oakland and run until 11:45 or so. It went well and I think that the trip was a success.

I got back to the hotel just after noon and we checked out and hit the road west to go to Canton, Ohio and visit my family there. I haven’t been out to Canton in two years so we thought that it would be nice to go out there since we were so close. The actual travel time from Pittsburgh to Canton is under two hours. That is, if you don’t get lost. We, of course, did. Getting out of Pennsylvania and through West Virginia is easy. But once you are in Ohio, the road that you follow exits off of itself which is very confusing and both Min and I missed the exit and didn’t notice until we had hit Youngstown. So that made the trip much longer that it had to be. We didn’t arrive in Canton until 4:00 or so.

My grandparents were pretty surpirsed that we had shown up out there but they rallied the troops and got just about everyone able to come over after work. Min and I and my grandparents went off to a restaurant in Louisville (that is a suburb of Canton, pronounced LEWISville and NOT in Kentucky) and got a fish fry.

Almost all of my close Ohio family managed to get over to my grandparent’s house by 7:30 or so and we managed to hang out for the entire evening. It really worked out well that everyone was able to come over. We figured that this couldn’t really have worked out any better if we had planned it. The only person that I didn’t get to see was my cousin Monica who had to work while we were there. But Gwen made it out and I hadn’t gotten a chance to see her since she had come out to Ithaca to hang out for a few days almost two years ago – or maybe that was three years ago. Hmmm. I just check the SGL archives, they visited in the summer of 2002. Boy, that is a long time ago and boy is SGL handy for looking up things like that. It is going to be really nice to have such a great record of my life to look back on someday. Already it is really handy for looking things up that I would totally lose track of otherwise.

We hung out with the family until 12:30 or so and then we headed off to downtown Canton to stay at the Marriott McKinley Grand. It is a really old hotel, one of those neat ones from back in the era when every decently sized town had that one amazing hotel right downtown. It was pretty rundown just a couple of years ago, I understand, but Marriott and some developers stepped in just recently and poured all kinds of money into totally renovating it and making it really nice. Now it is the center of downtown Canton (whoo-hoo.) It was late when we checked in. The place seemed pretty nice. It seems weird to have a nice hotel where it is, just not a big enough city to support one, I wouldn’t think. Canton is definitely smaller than Utica.

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