Spring Training in Arizona (where Clevelanders get sunshine in March)

‘Not every post has to be a three ring circus!’

– me, to myself, every time I have something of questionable interest to write about but can’t drum up the creative energy to “polish the turd” and make it seem worthwhile.

My life is not exciting enough to post about my day-to-days (and even if it was I’m just not THAT kind of over-sharer.) I always try to put at least like, five seconds of brainstorming and MS Painting into the things on Once Upon a Lime to make it worth your time to visit. I say I’m a less-than-frequent blogger because I like to wait for inspiration to hit and focus on quality over quantity, but sometimes it’s just because I’m lazy.

And other times I have words and thoughts pouring out every orifice of my body like the Hoover Dam broke in my brain, but like to keep them to myself. To anyone who’s ever told me I talk too much or have more opinions than any single person should, joke’s on you. I keep a lot of the real good gems all to myself.

All this share/don’t share was weighing on me last night as I was falling asleep trying to think up a theme for last weekend’s trip:

  • “Get the Most out of Your Spring Training Trip”
  • “What to do When One Person on Your Baseball Nirvana Vacay Isn’t a Fan”
  • “6 Smart Phones, No Good Directions, and Other Family Vacation Hells”

… and then I was like, ‘Uhh, why don’t I just post some pictures and say what we did?’

And so that’s what I’m doing instead. Aint no one changing the world at sarahoual.com today.

Or any day.

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Game 1, Indians at new Cubs Park in Mesa. Drank Old Style like Chicagoans and refused to respond to anything other than Rick, Ricky Vaughn, or Wild Thing all day. *runs to Netflix to see if any of the Major Leagues are on demand*

I adopted the Cubs as “My National League” team in 2003 during their playoff run (national secret: Bartman didn’t blow the NLCS, my bandwagoning did) and got hooked on their pretty ivy wall and troubled past-time. Ruth’s Called Shot? Cursed by a goat? 100+ year drought? The Cleveland misery I’d groomed over the years just translated so easily – like those North Siders were my long lost step brothers + sisters. Cleveland is always my ultimate pride and joy, trump card ride or die, but it’s fun to have more than one box score to look up each day from April-October and someone to root for in the opposite league. I also adopted the Angels as “My ‘home’” team when we moved to SoCal, but that’s just for the excuse to go to the ballpark and spit sunflower seeds all summer.

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Dinner at St Francis – Baked Goat Cheese (delicious), Roasted Salmon (double delicious), Sticky Toffee Pudding (kill yourself and go to heaven delicious). The extra treadmill time was worth it.

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Game 2, Indians at Padres in Peoria. San Diego shares this park with Seattle, whom IMO have the best beer and menu selections of any professional stadiums around, and they brought their A-games down to AZ with them. The Sad Sarah look is a product of being told they sold out of veggie dogs and I was going to have to use my Stone IPA to wash down… peanuts and another Stone IPA. Took out my frustration at the “test your pitching skills” booth and hurled softballs underhand to the gawks of old men until I got knots in my shoulder. Sigh, glory days.

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(supposed to be an embedded IG vid here. probably didn’t work. link)

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And on the last day we saw the Indians play at their home park in Goodyear; bumped into some old college buddies, put Bertman’s Ball Park Mustard on everything we ate, got on the live broadcast back home, and managed to escape the third day in the sun without sunburn. We also got a couple players to sign a GussStrong jersey for auction, which seemed a valuable use of our super fan time. If you aren’t familiar with the Columbus-area coach’s battle with cancer and are in the mood for a story that will inspire you, make you cry, then inspire you some more, read HERE.

“Since I’ve had cancer, I’ve lived a better life” – Stephen Gussler via 10tv.com

Great weekend with the jackpot “chosen” family and a Cleveland team keen on winning. Hopefully they save some hits and Ws for when the season actually starts.

Sarah OUaL

7 thoughts on “Spring Training in Arizona (where Clevelanders get sunshine in March)

  1. This looks like such an awesome trip! Glad you all had fun :)
    P.S. I LOVE your tattoo on your shoulder – so awesome!


  2. I meant to comment on your Instagram when I saw the video…I was mega impressed by the pitching. I envision that’s what it would look like if I tried right now, but in reality, the ball would probably leave my hand, go straight to the ground and dribble its way to home plate. You didn’t skip a beat! And yes…Go Cubbies! (In reality we know we are still “building” and it will be yet another rough year at Wrigley. But hey, we have tickets to 20 games (wut?) so I will still sit in the bleachers and drink Old Style regardless)


  3. I have a soft spot in my heart for those cursed Cubbies, even though i’ve been to more White Sox games. (i grew up outside to chi) and now that i’m in DC, i have my adopted Nationals.. and you’re right, they’re just an excuse for a beer and peanuts.


  4. looks like a fun trip!! I love baseball season right behind football season :) I’ve somehow made it to a fair amount of the major stadiums- one of my fav things to do when I travel.


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