a weekend with my dad

i love my dad. he is one of my favorite people in the world. i always look forward to spending time with him. when i was younger, he would drive me to fairmount, indiana to see james dean’s grave and hometown. what a cool dad to do something like that just for me! anyway, some months back, my dad suggested that we take another trip over a weekend … just the two of us … this time to cleveland, ohio. we’d go to some haunted houses and to the rock n roll hall of fame. i jumped at this chance, knowing that it would be a great time full of laughter, singing in the car, and having the crap scared out of us at haunted houses! my dad and i are very much alike and have many similar interests (including everything listed above!)

so the planning began. it wasn’t easy to find a free weekend. in fact, it was looking like some last minute potential setbacks would derail our trip… but we were un-deterred and were going to go regardless. i’m so so glad that that we did.

our first day out, we drove north to mansfield, ohio. after eating dinner with a friend of my dad’s, we headed over to the ohio state reformatory … an old prison (famously used in the movie, shawshank redemption) that was converted to a haunted house for the season. now, having lived in florida for the past several years, i’ve been lucky enough to go through some incredible haunted houses at universal studios. but i have to admit … no studio soundstage can ever compete with the real deal. this was the scariest place i’ve ever been to in my life. for 45 minutes, my dad and i walked around this prison … alone … while people jumped out at us from these prison cells and scared us to death! now i know that would be intense for some, but it was exactly what we love to do together!! after we had gone through the prison, we talked with some members of the historical society and were given information on daytime tours, as well as a “ghost hunt”. at this hunt, you are taken at night on a tour of the prison with all of the lights on. when it’s over, the lights are turned off and you are free to roam around the prison the entire night to try and encounter ghosts … and again, to have the crap scared out of you! we are so going to plan on doing this next summer. i can’t wait!

the next day, we went into downtown cleveland to the rock n roll hall of fame. this is a place i have always wanted to go to since it first opened. we had a blast looking at all of the memorabilia … beatles outfits … michael jackson’s glove … elvis presley’s cadillac … etc. but our favorite part was watching a video of all of the inductees. i owe it to my dad for exposing me to such awesome music at such a young age. i’m proud to say that i knew most of the music and the musicians. at the end of the day, we walked outside to the front of the museum and saw a big tour bus parked. we approached it and found out that it had belonged to johnny and june cash! we were able to go inside and see their private compartments where they’d hang out. i loved it! (especially looking in the same mirror that june would apply her makeup … how rad is that?)

that evening we were supposed to go to another haunted house, but i wasn’t feeling so great. instead, we decided to go and see the new movie “zombieland” … which was hilariously awesome. seriously, it is right up there with “shaun of the dead” for me!

our last morning in cleveland (before the drive back home) we went to see the house from “a christmas story”. i was so excited i could have cried. like many people, i remember watching that movie as a child (still watching it every year at christmas). to see the actual house, to visit the museum with so many original props, was a dream come true for me. i believe that it is one of the best christmas movies around… and it was made on such a small budget!! if you ever have the opportunity to see this house, do it. i promise you won’t regret it!

i was am so sad that our weekend is over. i will happily look at my pictures and remember the fun time i had just me and my dad!


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