We had barely caught up with the laundry from our Thanksgiving trip when it was time to leave again.
We spent this past weekend in Indianapolis with my family, enjoying a family tradition: the Nutcracker. For the past five or so years, my youngest sister has danced in the Gregory Hancock Dance Theater’s Nutcracker. And if you expand that poster image, and think you notice a coincidental resemblance between yours truly (or at least my children) and the waif in the photo. Yep, that's my sister. Katie was Clara this year.
We are all so proud of her. My baby sis is a superb dancer, and could probably pursue a career in it if she chooses. If you're in Indy next year, check them out. The show every year is top-notch--this is NOT a kids dance recital, but a very professional, high-quality, tear-jerking show. Yes, tear-jerking. It's a contemporary Nutcracker that reinvents Clara as a street urchin, Drosselmeier as a homeless man, and the Nutcracker and Sugar Plum Fairy as parental figures in the end. Not the traditional music either, and honestly, you won't miss it.
This weekend was a big deal for the family. All of my sisters were in town (I'm one of 5, and we are spread across 4 states). My grandmother also flew out from Nebraska with one of my aunts and one of my cousins. There was a lot of blonde hair and a lot of blue eyes staying in the hotel just down the street from the theater. I had a great time seeing all my sisters--it's been almost two years since I've seen my Texas sister in person, and about a year since I've seen my Chicago sister.
We (adult sisters + cousin) went out Saturday night to a bar/blues club in downtown Indy called the Slippery Noodle Inn. Smoky, but fun. I was amused at the looks that we girls got--Imagine 5 20-30-something women, all blonde haired, blue eyed, blue jeans and black jackets walking through a bar together.
The bar itself was fun. The building is an old brownstone with a rich history (longest continually operating bar in the state of Indiana), and as recently as the 1950's operated as a brothel (yes, that was "19" and not "18"). I left for college at 17, so never actually experienced any of Indy's grown-up nightlife (trips home are usually full of visiting and kid-friendly activities). I had no idea this place even existed.
Now, time to relax and unpack for good. And catch up on laundry (again). And buy groceries. And take my black jacket to the cleaners to get rid of that stale cigarette smoke smell.
I am almost ashamed that I didn't advertise the Nutcracker performances beforehand, but I have a now-ingrained aversion to sharing travel plans online. And showing off that my sister was starring in a dance in another state amounts to painting "Out of Town, Be Back Monday" on our front door. No, I don't think you are some crackpot who's going to break into my house while I'm gone. But you just never know.