Monday, September 27, 2010

The Best of Times & The Worst of Times

Okay, I wouldn't exactly describe any of the following events as the "Worst of Times" because I'm going to be talking about my visit to Auburn and there is nothing terrible about a visit to Auburn! But this weekend definitely had some high Highs and some low Lows...the title of this post may be a little too dramatic.

High: We rolled out of Lexington with my parents camper in tow and made excellent time in our travels to Auburn.

Low: Pulling a camper may save you some dollars by avoiding sky high hotel rates...but the amount of gas needed to pull that load in a diesel truck is a little more than we're use to spending on our drive down there.

High: We had planned on putting the camper up next to my friend Candi's family. She and her kids weren't coming to the game, but her husband, parents, brother and cousins were all going to be there for the game. (Candi was my roommate at Auburn, she's one of my closest friends and she now lives in Houston, TX, so we don't get to see each other often). We arrived in Auburn safe and sound and when I located her family's camper site I was surprised to find she was there with her kids! I was so excited...especially since I talked to her on Wednesday prior and she told me they weren't planning on coming to any games. She had decided to surprise me as a belated b-day gift and it was the BEST gift to get to spend time with her and see our kids play together...Ruth Ann and Reagan playing make up 99% of the pictures I took, which I'll post later.

Low: The weekend was too short and there is so much to do while I'm in Auburn that I didn't get to spend near enough time chatting and laughing with Candi.

High: Candi's kids played with Ruth Ann and Spencer for most of the day on Friday and I love seeing my kids playing with my friends's kinda like the circle of life and it just gives me a warm feeling.

Low: While Candi and I did some grocery shopping I left Ruth Ann in Arch's care. Under her father's supervision she locked herself in the camper...power on and air conditioning running, so she was fine. Looking back I think they should have left her in there since she was in desperate need of a nap. Eventually she would have fallen asleep. Thankfully Reagan (Candi's daughter) was there and she was able to get into the camper after they worked a window and screen open.

High: I bought a cute orange and blue dress for Ruth Ann to wear next year for tailgate.

Low: Spencer wandered off from tailgate to find his step-father only to show back up with a garnet shirt that read "Beat Auburn"...believe me when I say it has taken every ounce of self-control I have to not ask him how that shirt worked out for him. I'm a terrible loser, I'll admit it, but I'd like to think I'm a gracious winner. So I've done zero taunting to my family regarding our win...the words War Eagle have not left my lips since our win and I didn't even wear an Auburn t-shirt home on Sunday. I'd like to think this is out of the kindness of my heart, but actually it's because I left the game when Auburn was down 20-7 to rejoin Candi's family because I was so disgusted by the game I was watching and felt my time would be better spent with my friend who lives a 1000 miles away from me rather than suffer a humiliating defeat...which I'll get into later.

High: Although it was hot, there was a nice breeze while were outside. The Clark family joined us in Auburn and one of their friends is an Auburn fan who likes to tailgate in style. She invited us to her tailgate which was in the suites at the Auburn Arena. At first I was hesitant about the set up because I was imagining an all indoor friends, it was fabulous! The suites are ground level and have an outdoor patio area that leads out to the stadium. For those of you familiar with Auburn the arena was built in the student parking area behind the stadium. You are a stones throw away from the stadium and it's air conditioned! It was fabulous...if anyone ever invites you to join them in the suites for tailgating...go quickly!

Low: Our camper was parked within walking distance of the stadium, but it was a long walk. The buses weren't up and running when we were ready to join the Clark's friends on campus so had to walk in. Things started out rough for me when I took what Brantley described as a graceful fall to the ground. I don't know what happened...I was the only one (besides Spencer...he's underage) who had not been drinking and I'm not sure what I tripped on but I sure enough fell straight to the ground. I felt like it was in slow motion so I managed to land on the side of my leg and my bottom so Baby Boy was just fine. Arch claims the fall was so quick he couldn't get to me to stop it from happening but I totally believe a natural instinct took over to keep me from falling forward (we were walking down a gravel covered hill) to keep baby safe. Some bruises have shown up this morning, but I bruise like a peach so it was to be expected.

High: Kick off was scheduled for 6:45 pm CST & I love a night game!

Low: We had toyed with the idea of taking Ruth Ann in the game so we got her a ticket to the game. But with kick-off being close to bedtime we ended up taking her to my cousins house at 3pm (which meant part of my afternoon was spent riding back to the camper to drive Ruth Ann to my cousins and then driving back to campus to rejoin my family). This also left us with an extra ticket we couldn't sell...I thought Gamecock fans were going to flock to Auburn since they were ranked higher than we were leaving tickets to be difficult to find before the game. I was wrong...people were giving away tickets before the game...oh well, live and learn...we won't be buying our tickets in advance the next time with attend a football game. Arch's favorite part is the haggling anyway, so I should have let him do what he does best!

High: We got in the game in time for all the pre-game festivities, including the release of the eagle.

Low: Although our tickets were purchased through an Auburn fan...they were smack in the middle of the USC section. Great for listening to the USC band and their cheerleaders, but HORRIBLE if you wanted to hear the Auburn band and if you wanted to get your hands up for Bodda-Getta. To say I was bummed about our seats is an understatement. Especially when Carolina scored 3 touchdowns to Auburn's 1 in the first quarter and half and every time my husband would high five those around us and look at me and say "This is going to be a good game!"...oh, how I've wanted to throw those words back in his face, but again, I'm a gracious winner, so I've remained silent. For those who attended Auburn or grew up going to Auburn games you'll understand this...99% of the fun of game day is the feeling you get when you're cheering with your Auburn family as the band takes the field and in unison you sing the fight song. I haven't been in Jordan-Hare for a football game in 3 years and I was looking forward to those chills and the ear deafening cheers as the football players rushed out of the locker room...but being in the visitors section with the sound of the USC band playing their fight song caused all of what I love most about a football game to be drowned out. At first I thought I would just push through and do my very best to make the most out of where I was sitting...but I grew uncomfortable cheering loudly in a group of people who were not wishing my team the best. I'll cheer for USC during any other game they play...I'll enjoy 2001 and I'll cheer along with the cheerleaders, but not at Jordan-Hare. I live 20 minutes from Williams Brice, I'll go there to sit with USC fans, but not in Auburn. Anyway, when USC went so far ahead of Auburn, I simply couldn't take it anymore and I left. Not because I gave up on my team, but because I was on the verge of tears (keep in mind I'm 6 months pregnant...tears flow easily) and wanted out, out, out. I made my way back to the campers and enjoyed the rest of the game with friends I don't see very often and enjoyed it just as much as if I had been in the Home section. However, because I didn't stay I forfeited all rights to gloat about our exciting come from behind victory.

And finally...

High: Auburn, #10 (AP Top 25 rankings)

Low: (At least for all my USC friends and family) USC #20

But fear not my USC friends...I'll be your biggest supporter in the state of South Carolina on October 9th when I'm hoping you'll upset Alabama!!!

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