Friday, November 13, 2009

Toto, We're Not in Hempstead Anymore

Greetings from Lawrence, Kansas. Home of the Jayhawks. We landed at 8:30 central time. We rented a car and Grant drove us to the campus of Lawrence. Eastern Kansas is not what I expected. It actually has hills and Lawrence is on top of hill. The campus is a giant U around Lawrence. There are some very scenic areas as shown here.

The campus has a lot of old sandstone buildings and the architecture is quite impressive. We have already seen the front of Allen Fieldhouse, which looks like a fieldhouse. Downtown Lawrence is also very pretty, with a variety of stores, including Weaver's, a department store that's been around since 1857.

It's actually a very warm day in Lawrence. It's currently 65 degrees and hazy. After Grant gave us the tour of Lawrence, we drove to the rural town of Williamsburg to meet up with his mom, a Kansas native and her boyfriend Jodie. Driving to Williamsburg was what we expected of Kansas. Rural, with lots of farms, lots of cows, some new developments, but lots of open land. Williamsburg is the classic small Kansas town. A general store, a small town hall and one terrific little restaurant.

Guy and Mae's is one of the best barbecue places in Kansas. In fact Grant's mom pointed out that Doc Severinsen once talked about Guy and Mae's on the Tonight Show during Johnny Carson's tenture as host. It's part of a small building complex, which includes the Town Hall next door. It has a brick facade and a small Guy and Mae's Tavern sign on the door and a G&M sign on the window. You could very easily miss it.

Once in there, it's like the classic tavern in a small town. But it's more than a tavern. It's barbecue heaven. We ordered three whole slabs of ribs. They bring the slab of ribs out covered in large tin foil with newspaper underneath to support the slab.

The ribs are just simply delicious. I can't even describe how good they are, especially with the home made barbecue sauce. The ribs came out super quick too. Down it with their iced tea, and you're good to go. By the way, Grant's mom and her boyfriend Jodie are two of the nicest, funniest people you can meet. Now I know where Grant gets his sense of humor from.

Once we were done with the great meal, we were off to go to our hotels. But before we got to our hotels (more on that in a minute), we had to stop off at a Dairy Queen for a Blizzard! So if you add the Blizzard to the great ribs we ate, it was a total of 3000 calories for Tieff and I respectively (Grant passed on the ice cream).

Then it was on to our hotels. We are in separate hotels because it turns out that not only is Kansas hosting Hofstra in men's basketball tonight, Kansas is hosting Nebraska in football tomorrow. Thus just about all the hotels in Lawrence are sold out. I was fortunate to book a double bed in Econo Lodge in Lawrence. Grant had booked his room sooner.

As for this Econo Lodge, well there are two strikes on it already. First, there was no toilet paper in our room. Second, when I tried calling the front desk from our room, the phone didn't work. Well I guess you get what you paid for. But since there was a scarcity of rooms in Lawrence this weekend, I paid $200 for this double bed room (Tieff is splitting the cost, so its actually $100 each). So actually, we're not getting what we paid for.

But that's ok, we are only hours away from seeing Hofstra vs. Kansas in Allen Fieldhouse. Grant's mom described the place as "loud". My ears are prepared and I can't wait.


  1. Great write up. Just one correction the buildings on campus are constructed of limestone not sandstone.

  2. Further proof you can't take me anywhere on the limestone part. But thanks for the compliment. :-)