Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year's By Marriott

See that little pink blob in the upper right corner of this Pepco map? That is zip code 20833, home of the "Life On The Beach" world headquarters and souvenir shop. Unfortunately, the 60-mile an hour winds yesterday took a toll on our HQ, leaving us without power - which was OK with me because I was at work! However, as day descended into dusk, a frozen Mrs. Matthews called me at ABC News, and together, we assembled an evacuation plan.

Checking the trusty Marriott points account, I discovered we had enough in our account to get a room at the Courtyard by Marriott in Rockville, so off we went to spend New Year's with the book of Mormon!

We had planned a quiet family games night at home... Robin would have cooked a bunch of naughty food, and we had planned to sit at the kitchen table and enjoy it with a game of Scrabble and Dick Clark's stroke. But when God handed us lemons, we made an evening of it, and enjoyed a nice meal at the Macaroni grill, followed by Scrabble by the fireplace in the hotel lobby.

We were so focused on our game, that we missed the ball drop altogether - Robin was in the middle of playing the word "Resize" with the "z" on a triple letter score at the stroke of midnight... But we were decidedly warmer than those nuts in Times Square...

By the way - we could have gone home earlier in the evening - I called home at around 10:30 and heard my answering machine - a sure sign that power was back - but by then we had committed to our evening - So, except for the two boys wrestling for control of the bedsheets in the bed that they shared, a pleasant time was had by all!

We found the power outage to be a fitting end to a 2008 that was difficult to say the least for our family... Here's to hoping that our lights stay on in 2009 - or that if they do go out, it will be due to a storm, and not because we couldn't pay our bill!

Happy New Year!

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