On Friday, we sat for a while & caught up, then we had to find some dinner. It was St. Patrick's Day, so we had to find an Irish Pub, and the hotel employee we spoke with had the perfect spot for us.
At first, we sat in the pub, until we realized there was outdoor seating. We were able to escape the smoke in the pub, and, thankfully, it was warm enough to be very comfortable sitting outdoors.
After we ate, we walked around for a bit and strolled into the Moon Pie General Store.The only thing I bought was some vanilla Moon Pie Coffee. I love moon pies, but I knew if I bought something, I'd want to eat it. And, I've been doing well with not eating sweets...until Friday night. My SIL makes a wicked peanut butter cake, and she brought one for us. With a glass of cold milk, the cake was just amazing. We got back to the hotel, watched Miss Congeniality 2 and had our cake.
Saturday, we followed some friends' advice and ate at a popular biscuit place.
The line was long, but moved quickly. It was very worth it. They had maple coffee that was so good that we dropped back by that night to buy some to take home.
We strolled down to the Rivermart in the parking lot of the Tennessee Aquarium. We visited booths of some very talented artists. Our favorite booth was jewelry made from classic books. They had earrings, necklaces, bracelets. We were mesmerized and couldn't pull ourselves away. If you have a book-lover in the family, check out their Facebook page. These are some pictures of some of the other jewelry they offer. I'm not sure why I didn't get a picture of the book jewelry.
There was also a lady that made jewelry out of hardware; it was beautiful. How she could look at a sprocket and know it would make beautiful earrings is beyond me. She has an Etsy shop, so go check it out.
We walked over to St. Paddy's on the Parkway and were instantly under-whelmed. The entry fee went to a good cause, but it was much smaller than we thought it was going to be. The most excitement I had was meeting Tank:
My SIL said he was unhappy because he had on a green tutu. Poor little thing! He was such a sweetheart.
Then, we saw these guys the night before, and they showed up on the Parkway:
There were bands on the outdoor stage:
And we knew there were going to be some inside, too, so we headed in The Honest Pint:
We were awed by the building:
I ordered the same kind of beer I had before we came in, and was disappointed. My SIL ordered Harp, and was told that they were out. So, we ordered Guiness Blonde, and it was flat. I felt sorry for our waitress...she had a few tables upstairs and downstairs. We ordered a couple of appetizers, but were told that they were out of the dip. (And then my SIL saw someone eating some later.) All of that didn't deter us from sitting at the table for a few hours and enjoying some of the music. This was our favorite (Molly Maguires):
On our walk back to the hotel, we saw some interesting structures. The Dome:
Part of the First Methodist Church in 1881:
A random gate that my SIL noticed:Eyes on a building. There's also a confederate statue on a fountain and a cannon in front of the building. This would appear to be a popular hangout with the college crowd.
My SIL noticed the tile on this building:We ate a supper of biscuits & peanut butter cake (with milk, of course!) and watched a couple of episodes of Say Yes to the Dress. Overall, it was a pretty low-key weekend, but it was so nice to be able to spend time with my SIL...alone. Without the guys and without distractions.
Before I left Chattanooga, I went to Mass at the Minor Basilica, Sts. Peter and Paul. I saw the building as we were walking back to the hotel (it's across the street from The Dome Building), but I didn't realize that was it because it looks very non-descript on the outside. Oh, but inside!
The 3 physical signs that a church is a "lesser basilica":The first is the presence of the conopaeum — a silk canopy designed with stripes of yellow and red, traditional papal colors. The minor basilicas also have the right to display the papal symbol as in the above picture (the crossed keys).
The third is the tintinnabulum, or bell. It is mounted on a pole and carried processionally, along with the conopaeum, at the head of the clergy on special occasions.
I'm not sure about this side of the altar.
This side is pretty self-explanatory, especially if you're a Catholic!
The stained-glass windows were designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany.
The Stations of the Cross:
Kilgen Organ. The Basilica has had the same organist since 1960.As American Churches go, this one is pretty old: 1890. But, as in European Churches, it's always important to look up.
The Mass was different than what I'm used to: lots of chanting with Latin thrown in, and, during the Eucharist Prayer the priest had his back to the congregation. It was just amazing.
So...back to work tomorrow, but no kids, making it almost like a day off! 9 more weeks until summer break!