Anniversary in Des Moines

Vivian and I already had a big, pull-all-the-stops trip this year to Las Vegas to celebrate one of our many anniversaries, but we couldn’t let our actual wedding anniversary pass us by without taking a trip somewhere. So where did we go? Why right around the corner to Des Moines, the perfect place to go to spend a one-day-off vacation!

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We drove down on Monday night, passing by the familiar smiley face in Adair and stuffed ourselves with Mexican food from Mi Mexico in the West Des Moines suburb of Clive to start our brief vacation off right. It’s been smoldering here in the midwest, so we took a brief, romantic swim in the hotel pool to cool off properly before calling it a night.

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We had absolutely no plans in Des Moines other than to goof around and whatever we happened to stumble upon. First stop: the Science Center of Iowa downtown. It was more of an activity center for kids, but Vivian and I did get to have some fun connecting with our inner children, shooting off paper rockets and playing around in front of a meteorologist’s green screen. Unfortunately, most of the museum was closed off for some cadaver exhibition, which neither Vivian nor I felt we had the stomach to experience.

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We headed out into the broiling heat long enough to take a look at the capitol, but the temperatures were exceeding one hundred degrees, so we decided to retreat to the Great Indoors once again. We stopped at the Gateway Market cafe for lunch, which was quite a bit like Whole Foods, though not nearly as expensive. We dropped by the World Market back in west Des Moines next, stocking up on exotic foods and random electronic toys. Vivian got a voice-distortion megaphone that should be fun for some random occasion.

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We spent the rest of the afternoon at the Clive Aquatic Center, a small community waterpark which seemed to be a scaled-down version of Oceans of Fun. I couldn’t think of any better place to spend an afternoon with triple-digit temperatures, and we put my waterproof digital camera through its paces as we got video and photos of each other sliding around and drifting on the lazy river.

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Of course, we had to finish off the day by having a big lobster dinner, so we dropped by the Waterfront Seafood Market and Restaurant for lobster tail, shrimp, scallops, and clam chowder. I also presented Vivian with my third Anniversary Comic — I’ve been drawing up small, illustrated summaries of our years together, showing little cartoon vignettes of the things we’ve done.

We drove on home quite happy and sleepy. Now that we have a child on the way, I’m not sure what we’ll be doing for our fourth anniversary. Knowing Vivian, though, I’m sure we find something fun. I love you, sweetie! Happy Anniversary — I can’t wait to see what the next year has in store for us.

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