It started going downhill from the moment I walked out the door, forgetting to grab two very important things, one being the DIRECTIONS. The other was a CD I said I would bring along.
I finally got to RIT a good 20 minutes late thanks to rush-hour-like traffic on Jefferson Rd on a weekend afternoon, of all strange things. I normally wouldn't take Jefferson, but I had a stop to make on the way.
Catherine had directions, and grabbed a few extra CDs since I forgot mine, and mentioned that Heather and Ryan had decided to come. Yay! Full car. :) So we hit the road.
Less than 2 hours later (when drive time was predicted by fellow corner crew members to be 2-2:30 hours) we arrived at Rt 14 near Elmira by around 5pm. The directions said that the rink is off campus, so we should ignore the signs to the college and take 14 North "a couple miles" and we will see the domes on the right.
So we take 14 North, and before long, what does it do but turn on us? Yeah, a sign said 14 North, turn left. The directions said nothing about that, but we took it. So we drive a mile. We drive 2 miles. It's getting near 3 miles and we're on a country road with nothing around, no domes in sight, so we figure we went the wrong way somewhere and decide to turn around. We were roughly here.
So we head back thinking maybe the reference to Rt 14 was only to tell us what exit to take, but once we got off, we weren't supposed to make any turns. We had to make a left turn initially just to GET on 14, so we decided to go back and continue straight on that road here, but little did we know that that 4-lane divided road would dead-end on us, turning into a right-angle left turn onto a residential street. Great.
So we turn around and head back towards 14 and decide to try going south on it instead, thinking maybe the person who provided the directions had a brain fart. Once again, the route signs tell us to make turns to stay on 14. So we do, then we don't, and in any case we don't see any "domes" sticking up out of the nearby land, but we do find Wegmans. So we decide to go in there and ask someone if they know where these domes are that are supposed to be so visible.
We ask our "unusual question" at the customer service counter, and the nice lady there told us to head down this road that Wegmans is on, in the direction we came from, and we'll see the domes come up on the right. What the hell... that's exactly what our directions said. But oh well, Catherine seemed to think it made sense. "We just didn't go far enough." While we're there, we decide to get some dinner at Wegmans. I got some Wokery. Yum. :) We finished eating by 5:45, so we had 15 minutes to find this place before tickets go on sale.
We head back out on the road in the direction we were told. Little did we know at the time, it was taking us totally the wrong way. Either the lady at Wegmans was turned around in her head as she was pointing, or she knew we were RIT fans and didn't want us to find it. :-P
Wegmans is here, but we got sent SOUTH on Clemens Center Pkwy with the idea in our heads that we simply hadn't gone far enough last time. Well, I knew the road looked different but Catherine seemed to think we had been there before. Seeing the map now, I realize how right I was. :) Soon enough, Clemens Center stopped being nice to us and our plan to look for "domes" on the right was doomed. We managed to find the Elmira College campus, but we knew that the rink wasn't there.
So there we were, roaming the streets of Elmira, trying to find a place that was only described to us as "you'll see the domes on the right after a couple of miles" and we're pretty sure that is with the assumption that we're on Rt 14 somewhere.
Somehow we find our way back onto 14, and we're heading south. And once again we reach a point where we had to turn to STAY on 14, but the signs weren't early enough for me to get in the right lane, so I ended up getting onto 328 heading south.
Before long, we realize that there are NO ROADS coming off of 328. It's more of a divided highway taking us someplace far away. We got off at the first exit here and found a convenience mart where we asked another girl to help us. Notice how close to the PA border we got. If we had seen a sign welcoming us to Pennsylvania, that would've been good for a laugh I'm sure. :-P
Well anyway, she wasn't even quite sure where the rink was until we talked about it for a little bit, but ended up sending us back up 14 North over a bridge, and turning right at a traffic light which should be Main St. And then we had to look for College St. And once again, the domes should be visible.
Well we get over the bridge, but then we never find Main St, and the road we're on becomes a dead end. Great. We're roaming once again.
By now it's at least 6:15 and we're worried about not getting our tickets, and getting quite pissed about our lousy directions from 3 different sources. For a while Heather (mountainheather) had been trying to call Paul (mischlep) on her cell phone but his didn't seem to be turned on. Then we had her leave a message for him, hoping it might beep at him, and then her battery died, so he couldn't have called us back anyway. Great.
Somehow we find our own way back to 14 heading NORTH from 17, where we had been originally. Since we had gone nearly everywhere else, the only possibility could be that it was further north on 14 than "a couple miles" and we turned around too soon.
So, familiar with that stretch of road already, I went back up there, only this time I was following a line of cars. Gee, hopefully they're all going to the game so we can just let them lead us there. Well, a few turned off, but I continued to follow one north on 14 while everyone else kept looking for these "domes", although by then it was dark out. Then suddenly they pulled off onto a road to the right, and I was just about to pass them when Catherine noticed a big illuminated sign by that road, "Elmira College Hockey".
Now, remember the first map link I posted, showing where we turned around the first time? This is where the place was the whole time.
I would like to add that there is a significant driveway leading into the place that bends, and tall trees and hills everywhere that conceal the domes. They were never visible from 14 at all. At least, not to someone who had never seen them before and had never been there before. Here is a nice aerial photo of the location (provided by MapQuest, but they'd probably make you sign up for the feature if I simply used their link, so this image is on my own server).
Well, yay, we finally found it. Now, Catherine says Paul told us to park in the "lower lot". Hmm, well, wouldn’t you know it, once you get past the river, hills and trees, the whole place is LEVEL! So which is the lower lot? Who knows. I parked in the first lot that wasn't blocked off. It was a little after 6:30 by then.
Fortunately we were still able to get tickets and we found Paul and Kathy and the rest of the Corner Crew. But there were only 2 seats near Paul so Catherine and I sat there while Heather and Ryan had to find seats elsewhere. :(
As for the game, you can read the recap here, but basically RIT got the first 3 goals, then Elmira came pack to tie it, then took one more to lead 4-3. RIT answers: 4-4. Elmira takes the lead again at 5-4. RIT ties it again at 5-5. Nobody scores in overtime. It kept both sets of fans on their toes for sure.
As for MY toes, they were quite frozen by the end of the night. The dome isn't heated at all apparently, just the hallways. I got the feeling back in my toes after a half hour or so in the warm car. :)
Fortunately, getting OUT of Elmira wasn't as difficult, but it wasn't without a snag. See, a sign told me to go this way to get on 17 West. So I did. Then out of nowhere comes a sign that says "Exit: 17 West" ... what the...!?! I thought I was ON 17 west, but apparently not. Well I missed the "exit" from the road I was on to the road I was on because I was too confused by its existence to react to it. But oh well, the road I ended up on went in the same direction, and I was able to find gas before we got back on 17 so that was good.
Speaking of gas, I figure Komey owes me for the 1/8 of a tank that I wasted on his poor directions. :-P