Today was the centerpiece day of our trip to Columbus — game day! We greeted the day at the crack of mid- to late-morning, and were thrilled to find it cold and gloomy outside.
Perfect weather for traipsing around town and then walking to the arena!
The first stop on our busy itinerary was the utterly charming Pistacia Vera in the German Village. There we were able to start our day off right, with pain au chocolat and cafe au lait. When this is your breakfast, you can be pretty sure that the day is going to be a good one.
After our leisurely repast we took a quick driving tour of the German Village (if anyone reading this wants to give us a cute brick house in the German Village, we won’t say no), then headed out to the real reason we drove to Columbus. No, not the hockey game — the quilt stores!
We got gobs of adorable fabrics and great patterns and notions — you know, the kind of stuff most hockey blogs talk about — and we even drove past the single coolest store on the face of the earth:
If you are looking for a one-stop source for turntables, typewriters and fountain pens, we know just the place.
Speaking of just the place, if you’re in Columbus and looking for a pin-up themed bar/diner with a delicious menu, and a creative array of cocktail options stop in at Betty’s. They did very well by us.
So, shopping and lunch done, we returned to the hotel to rest up while the temperature dropped outside, so it would be especially miserable walking the two blocks to the arena at 6:00. One of the things we really wanted to be able to photograph when we got here was the lights outside Nationwide Arena, using our star filters, the way FSN Ohio does on the Blue Jackets broadcasts. It was pouring rain when we arrived for the game, though, so we were stymied. Stupid rain.
It should surprise no one that Victory Euro Mats made the trip here with us, and he enjoyed his time at this game immensely.
The Blue Jackets have marked various parts of the concourse with their distance from center ice. It would take a gajillion Matses, lined end to end, to reach from here to there.
Mats accepted an invitation to drop by Stinger’s house, but Stinger wasn’t there when he arrived. That jerk.
Stinger might not have been anywhere to be seen, but there was a fabulous snapshot of his grandmother.
There isn’t warning in the world enough to prepare you for the goal cannon. It’s fabulously loud and totally awesome. The Devils really need to adopt this tradition. (Also, the Devils could adopt a tradition of scoring eight goals whenever we’re in the building, as the Blue Jackets do.)
Seriously, Devils, get a goal cannon. You won’t be sorry.
Mats is nuts for the Blue Jackets!
There are not words to describe how much Schnookie loves this mascot.
Mats is an incorrigible drunk…
…But sobriety is no accident. We cut him off after he drank his height’s worth, and took his car keys away from him.
There wasn’t anyone in front of him, so Mats had a great view of what ended up being a wild game. We appreciated that the Blue Jackets scored one goal for every hour we spent in the car on the way here, but we also felt deeply sympathetic toward the BJs fans. The people behind us remarked, when the game was 5-1, that they didn’t feel the lead was safe with Mason in goal. An 8-3 win is nice, but it doesn’t make up for an entire shitty season.
The color we need to get a picture of this week for our sixty-four colors flickr challenge is asparagus green. It had been quite elusive, right up until we glanced across the arena and spotted that guy in the green jacket. Thanks, dude! Heh.
The game was, as the 8-3 score would suggest, a marvelous affair. The real capper, though, was when they had a “lucky section” giveaway… and our section won! We’ve been to literally hundreds of NHL games in our lives, and we have never once been in a lucky section before. Our loot? Free, empty Rrroll Up The Rim Tim Hortons cups! WOOOOOOOOOO!!!! We won a free coffee and a free donut! And we think we may also have won free chili and another free donut thanks to the Blue Jackets scoring three goals and winning, respectively. We’ll be dining out on this game for days! Literally!
Here Mats poses with Stinger and our lucky winner cups.
When we got back to our hotel room, after what seemed like a miles-long trudge through freezing rain (that’s supposed to turn to snow tonight!), we decided to try the star filter on the Nationwide Arena lights from afar.
It’s not quite perfect, but it’ll do.