Friday, April 25, 2014

Dinner and a Game with Barb and Herb

One reason for Watson traveling with us on the first few days of our trip was the opportunity to meet some of Melvin's family, which she and I did on Tuesday, April 15. Melvin's Aunt Barb, Uncle Herb and their son David joined us for a chilly game at Lake Olmstead Stadium, in Augusta. We made up five percent of the crowd, and later more.

Savannah second baseman Jeff McNeil takes a pitch

A 'battle of bugs,' the GreenJackets squeaked past the visiting Savannah Sand Gnats, winning 2-1 in the eighth, an extra inning since this was the second game of a doubleheader.

Before the game, Barb prepared a dinner of chicken rouladen, a traditional side of spƤtzle, green beans, mixed salad and for dessert, a tart, the blackberries for which Herb and Barb collected themselves. Delicious! For all the southern cooking and barbecue we would eat on this trip, it was a distinct pleasure to eat a home-cooked meal.

Starting the day in Rome—the roads that lead there run both ways—we returned to Atlanta to see the Cyclorama. I was sorry to have missed this when we were in the city in 2007, particularly because I had seen the one in Gettysburg two years earlier.

Image courtesy of the Georgia Department of Economic Development

Viewing the panoramic painting of the Battle of Gettysburg is a much more low-tech experience, or at least it was when I was there. Visitors stand on a platform in the center and walk around as different sections of the painting, different moments in the battle, are highlighted.

At the Atlanta Cyclorama, theater seating rotates 360 degrees as a recording describes Sherman's siege of the city. We made a second circuit as audio/visual technician Derrick Williams, in his role of "Young Abe," provided a much more post-modern narration.  Hoping to see an anachronism, I got something very much of the present, the 19th-century painting notwithstanding.

Painting detail, Ria's Bluebird

Afterwards, we returned to Ria's Bluebird for lunch. Yes, we liked our breakfast the day before that much. It can mostly be attributed to the peripatetic nature of our itineraries, but Melvin and I agree this was the first time we had eaten twice at the same restaurant on one trip.

A couple footnotes to the baseball game: I caught a ball that ricocheted off the facing of the roof. Turning 90 degrees in my aisle seat, I snagged it without even standing up. Not that it will allow me to live down the 2004 episode in Tulsa, it was an elegant catch, if I may immodestly say so myself.

Later, GreenJackets pitching coach Steve Kline asked me if I wanted to play first base. I didn't understand the knock on Brandon Bednar, who possibly could have heard the comments as well. Even more strange was Kline telling us another player is "dumb as a brick," and announcing no one on the team can hit. His lack of professionalism didn't make sense, at least not until I read his Wikipedia entry.

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