Monday, July 13, 2015

A Midnight Rambling: Getting Nostalgic in Novica

LOML and I had an impromtu date night Friday, and wound up in Downtown Novica, of all places. My hometown, the place I love more than any other on Earth - I drive by at least once every couple of months, but almost never pass through downtown anymore. If you're from Novica, you know you don't drive the "main drag" through Downtown - you go around, unless you have all day. But, we had time to kill,
and I wanted to see all of the changes I keep hearing about.

After the tour by car, we wandered around the Farmer's market and Craft Fair at Civic Park a bit, listened to the live music, and checked out the arts and crafts. Then, we decided to walk back and try the Brew & Meatball Company, or BMC as the signage reads, for drinks and dinner. I don't think it's been there more than a couple of years, but, let me say, wow! We loved it. Good food, good beer, fast service, chill atmosphere. A simple menu, but the food was really, really good. (Try the spicy pork meatballs!) It could become my Cheers, if we ever move back.

But, this was the highlight of my evening-
Sunset over Novica

 From the third level of the parking structure I'd never parked in before, because it wasn't there, I saw Novica in a way I'd never seen it before. (I'm glad my phone was charged.)

New paint job - same old Hi Ho Market & Sandwiches :)
Back in the day, FlowerChild, my best friend, & I used to walk a mile, or so, from my house to hang out downtown. Sometimes we'd eat lunch at the old Taco Bell. (The only one I've ever seen without a drive-thru - sadly, it has one now.) Sometimes it was sodas and snacks at Hi Ho, or ice cream across the street at 31 Flavors. Then we'd hang out at one of the bookstores (yes, plural - all indie!) or library, and walk through the alleys, wondering about the stories the century old buildings could tell.

Growing up, I watched stunt tapings for Knight Rider, saw Manny's El Loco (across the street from my house) transformed into Pinky's Diner for Quantum Leap, and, after the city poured tons of money into fixing up downtown, got to see Wayne & Garth on the big screen, headbanging to Bohemian Rhapsody while driving by the building where I took ballet lessons and the first theater I remember seeing a movie in -which is the building on the right....
Behind Sam's apartment.

In my alternate version of reality, it would also be the building Sam lives in, her place is on the corner, in the middle of the picture. It isn't really apartments, but it hasn't been a ballet studio in some time either. I know it's been a hair salon, and is currently a yoga studio. (This was taken from a parking structure I don't think it existed in 2006....)

A little more to the East from the same structure, not quite the same as Sam would see from her windows, but close...
Where the UFO Center stood.
Side note: Did you watch Roswell, too? I LOVED Roswell. (It needed more than three seasons!) See that empty, fenced in lot stretching from the lower left corner? THAT was the UFO Center. Yes. It was. Before that, it was a Bank of America branch. (I opened an account there when I was eighteen.) I think I have pictures of it, and the Crashdown Cafe (formerly the Downtown Deli Cafe, and now, I believe, Casa Moreno?) somewhere - but I'll save them for another post, along with the story about how I almost literally ran into Katherine Heigl at the Library, with my car.... (That kind of sounds like a game of Clue.)

After the sun went down, I dragged LOML through the alley behind the bookstore, which leads to the original firehouse and much newer courtyard behind City Hall - what FlowerChild and I called Gotham. I don't know why. It probably had something to do with the fact Batman, a la Michael Keaton, (or Batman Returns) was out around that time, and one of our faves. It was also the gates, and the way the place looks at night. Silly, I know. But, it was one of our things.

Anyway, LOML points out, as we're walking through said alley "You know, this is where it happened."
I ask, "Where what happened?"
He says, "Bruce Wayne's parents were murdered, by a lunatic, in the alley behind the theater."
I say, "We're good. The theater's back there. This is where Sam met the Shadow Watcher."
He says, "I don't know," points to random person crossing alley ahead of us. "That could be the lunatic there."
I shake my head, and continue to walk fearlessly through my alley. "Seriously, this isn't L.A."

And, since you're reading this, you know we twarted the villains lurking in the darkness, and made our way home safely ;)

With that, it's time for bed. Thank you for reading along with my little trip down memory lane. I hope you're having a beautiful night, day or sometime in between.....

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