Sunday, July 10, 2011

Detroit is right HERE

Last weekend was quite an adventure. The first of my summer trips:  Michigan. I'd never been to Michigan before (except a layover at the Detroit airport, which doesn't really count), so what better time than the present? As my grandma used to say, "I'm not getting any younger!"

The real reason for the trip was to attend Mike's cousin's wedding. But there was an other-side-of-the-family birthday party the same weekend. How convenient!

How overwhelming. The whole family. Both sides. Not a single person missing. All in three days.

But I survived. No one chased me away, and everyone was very nice. I had been warned about a select few (who shall remain nameless, as I know you're all reading this), but even they were welcoming. Even Mike's Aunt Sandy. :)

Friday when we arrived to Detroit, Mike's parents met us at the airport. We picked up the car and took a quick tour of the old Polish neighborhood, and of course 8 Mile. Complete with kids playing by the "Crackheads live here" sign in the park. Awesome.  We then made it to Mike's grandparents' house, where everyone was gathered for dinner and birthday celebration #1. We ate lots of food, looked at old pictures, and I soaked it all in--trying to tell one uncle from another, figuring out who belonged to who, and keeping everyone straight. Quite a task, given 25+ new faces in a few short hours. Then it was off to Mike's Uncle Mark's house, where we were staying for the weekend.

Saturday was the wedding day. After watching some lost 80's music videos and a little Wimbledon, it was go time. We made it to the church, and it was time to meet the second half of the crew. There were fewer people to meet on this side of the family, but I had received more warnings about them. To no surprise, they were wonderful as well. The wedding was beautiful, complete with Mike's grandpa giving a joyful "Work it! Gorgeous!" at the start of the ceremony. Then a tour of another part of town, mass #2, and the reception. It was a night filled with food, drinks, and dancing, and I was exhausted by the end of the night.

Sunday was a party for Mike's grandparents--the same side as Friday evening. Together they were turning 170 years old. The celebration included family portraits, food, yard games, a cupcake-family-tree, and yes - a snowball fight. Sunday night we enjoyed a past-his-prime Rick Springfield concert and watched 2,000 people re-live the 80s for two hours. Quite entertaining. Again, exhausted by the end of the night.

Monday was the voyage back home. I survived the weekend, and even passed the who's-who test--in chronological order. It was a wonderful weekend, and so great to meet such wonderful people. Now Mike and his brothers make so much more sense :)

Thanks to the Dapoz and Wierzbicki families who welcomed me into their homes, and housed and fed me all weekend. It was great meeting you all!


Above:  photobooth pictures from the wedding.

Right: pictures from outside the reception, taking a break from sweaty dancing.

I held back on taking many pictures from the weekend.
I didn't want to be too much of a creepster.

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