No.8 Sis called me at work late yesterday afternoon. She said if I could meet her at The Ordway Center for the Performing Arts in downtown St. Paul, she had an extra theater ticket I could use. How lovely! A friend had given her two tickets for “Nice Work If You Can Get It”, a touring Broadway show. She was going to take The Mister out for a date night, but he had some sort of bug. Bad for him, good for me.

I grabbed a bite to eat and drove downtown, right to the big River Centre parking ramp. I asked the attendant on the way in where the Ordway was. He waved vaguely at the River Centre Auditorium and said, “On the other side of the River Centre”. By the way, I know I’m spelling it centre instead of center. Apparently it was named by a Canadian.

I took a left and started around the auditorium. That was my first mistake. It was blocks before I could cross the street to make the next turn. I passed by the soup kitchen, with 30 or so shaggy men waiting outside, some fighting, some mumbling, some just rocking. Um, getting a little nervous here.

I saw a sign for Rice Park, 3 blocks to the right. I thought the Ordway was on Rice Park. Well that can’t be right, because I see Landmark Center (thank you for the proper spelling) straight ahead, and I KNOW the Ordway is right next to Landmark Center.

So I kept walking and walking, but there was no park, and nothing at all familiar. Oh crap, that wasn’t Landmark Center I was approaching, that was a church.

Maybe the sign for Rice Park was right after all. I turned right, tangled myself up in some sidewalk construction, and moved into the street. I passed a woman pushing someone in a wheelchair, right before I realized I was at the back of the Landmark Center. So close!

I came around the front of the building, and what to my wondering eyes did appear? The Ordway Center for Performing Arts a block ahead! And the woman pushing the wheelchair just going into the door! How the hell did she get so far ahead of me, so fast?

No matter. I got to the theater lobby, found No.8 Sis right away, and thoroughly enjoyed the play. It’s a musical comedy set in the Roaring Twenties. All the tunes are Gershwin, the acting is a slapstick hoot, and the singing is fantastic! If you’re in the neighborhood, go see “Nice Work If You Can Get It”.

Don’t ask the parking attendant for directions.

Stay tuned…