Mmmm, yes, people. Takin' it all the way back to New Year's Eve. (But I do hope y'all had an extra heart-y Valentine's Day!)
So, New Year's Eve rolled around just a couple weeks after I moved away from DC, and a couple of my friends/coworkers up there were Virginia alumni. So, we decided at my going-away party to try to take a road trip down to Hotlanta for the game! A few things about me: 1. There aren't very many things I like more than road trips. The radio, the people-watching on the highway, the logistics of it all... oh, I'm in heaven! 2. I will very rarely turn down a road trip to go see a football game. I know they say it's the journey, not the destination, but in this case, I think it's both. 3. ACC vs. SEC? Done deal.
Plus, I knew I'd be missing them a little by then, so we made it happen! Keith, Ryan, and Hannah drove down from DC on the 30th, and we spent the night in Raleigh and took off to Atlanta early the next morning. My sweet AAA discount got us a pretty affordable hotel near Buckhead, and we headed downtown about as soon as we got there!
Of course, that means we rode the Marta. I had lived in Atlanta as a child, between the ages of 5 and 10, so I remembered riding it pretty well, and my parents especially remember how sketchy it was. It turned out to be fine, especially with so many football fans riding it, but I didn't let my friends get on the train without telling them that this was NOT the DC Metro and that I would gladly leave them if they started a fight.
But, we got to Midtown in one piece. And we even found a few Virginia fans to eat dinner with at Mellow Mushroom, so we made some new friends, too. No requisite facebook friending took place, but I'm sure they are well and they live on in my heart.
I couldn't take my fancy schmancy camera into the Georgia Dome, and I wasn't an iPhone owner at the time, so I have this one picture to share with you from Keith's phone.
Anyway, Virginia got a good start, but couldn't manage to keep up with the reigning national champion (who is surprised?), so, against everything I believe in, we left in the third quarter. To be honest, we didn't want to be on the Marta or walking around somewhere when 2012 hit, so we (miraculously) ended up in a less-than-crowded restaurant in Buckhead five minutes before midnight. Long enough for me to reminisce about the previous New Year's Eve and still have time to blow a kiss at Ryan Seacrest.
By 2:00 AM, we were bone-tired, and the Marta was shutting down, so we called it a night. And then we made the loooooong trip up I-85 the next day, but don't worry, we stopped at Cracker Barrel.
Happy Belated 2012!