Written by Nicole Johnson, Wife to Elliot Johnson, and Independent Stylist at Stella & Dot
Elliot's team took a 3 leg trip with Miami in the middle of it at the end of May. Blake and I opted to stay in the warmer weather as Elliot headed off to Toronto, and met him in Miami in the middle of the trip. We decided to drive since it's only about 3.5 hours away, and I have always wanted to scout out the gators that supposedly hang out along the side of the road along "Alligator Alley."
We packed up the car and headed on down to meet Elliot a day late. The team had gotten in the night before, but I knew they were getting in late, so I opted to come in the next day so everyone could get sleep. Another wife said I made her feel selfish because she was coming in early even though her husband would want to sleep. I reminded her that this was for my own sleep, and nobody else's. I didn't want to deal with Elliot coming in at 4 am and waking up our son, and me missing out on sleep because of it. :) I know, ask Elliot, I LOVE my sleep. I didn't get the nickname Sleeping Beauty based only on my good looks... I got that nickname because I can pretty much fall asleep anytime, anywhere.
Anyway, Blake and I drove on down to Miami, not seeing any alligators (boo! But I did get to see one on the way home), and surviving a torrential downpour in the middle of nowhere. We arrived at the hotel exactly 30 minutes after Elliot left, of course, and went up to our room that had a gorgeous ocean view. Baseball has taken me to some not so nice places, and some of the most beautiful places. This place definitely fit on the beautiful places end of the spectrum. Breathtaking views of the Atlantic.
Once we got our bags and got ready, we decided to head out to the stadium. I googled it, and wrote down the first address I saw. It was the wrong address. We ended up in downtown Miami, driving around all over the place, looking for a stadium... how hard could it be to find? Once I googled some more on my phone, I found the right address, and proceeded back onto the highway, another good 17 miles away and finally made it to the game... very late.
We waited for Elliot, enjoyed some dinner, and headed back to the hotel. The next day, I met up with some old family friends, Karen and Jessica, from where I grew up. I hadn't seen them since a wedding in 2009, and it was so nice to see their friendly faces! We enjoyed some lunch, and I got to introduce them to my sweet son, who I was just barely pregnant with the last time they had seen me. :) I love getting to introduce him to people.
I also met up with my friend Christie, from Raleigh, who happened to be at the same hotel for a convention with her business. How perfect! Christie's son is 2 months older than Blake, and they are great buds when we're at our home in Durham. It was so nice to see her and Chase, since it had been a while since we got to see them.
We enjoyed another dinner with Elliot, and the next day, we headed on back up to St Pete while Elliot hit up Detroit with the team. It was nice to not fly on a trip (in case you haven't figured out that I'm a scared flyer), and it made me nostalgic of the times that I used to drive a lot of road trips to see Elliot on the road. :)
While Elliot was in Detroit, I drove up to Orlando to see my friend, Honesty, who was there managing an event at one of the hotels. Honesty and I have been good friends since we met in college in Arizona. I hadn't gotten to hang with her in a few years, and it was so fun to get to introduce her to Blake and catch up. Since we all lived in Arizona, we have since moved away to North Carolina, and she has moved to New York City. I love hearing her stories about New York, it sounds so busy and awesome!
Baseball travels take me to a lot of places, and offer me the chance to see old friends that I might not get to see. So fun to have the chance to see the people I love!