We met Larry, Melissa's husband. Larry was a wonderful host too and took us on a couple of driving tours of the city. He works with the governor of Kentucky, and I can say that they are lucky to have such a friendly and gracious guy working for them. Among other things, Larry is a Vietnam vet. I was interested to hear about his experience there and to talk about books we've read like Matterhorn and The Things They Carried and how truthfully they depict the war.
At Churchill Downs, we saw the amazing hat exhibit, watched one of the family's horses come from behind to win the Derby in 2009 on the screen that had replays of past races. We sat in a surround sound theater and I cried when the horses pounded around our heads for the two minute race. I asked Melissa if the races are that intense in person and she said, "More than that." Wow!
We stayed at the historic Brown Hotel. Somehow we got put on the club floor and in the mornings there was breakfast and coffee and in the afternoons wonderful appetizers two doors down from our room. Not that we wasted any time hanging around in the Club Room; we had places to go and good food to eat!
The real purpose of our visit, though, didn't have anything to do with the city of Louisville. It had to do with our mother and this friend of hers. And that is the post for next week. Stay tuned. In the meantime, here's a photo of the very beautiful friend and her very beautiful daughter, the best finest people in the best finest most famous, wonderful place in the world! :) It was a terrific trip.