Finally, our first trip outside of Tbilisi! Last weekend, we left Abby with her nanny so we could visit Sighnaghi and spend a night away. We left Saturday morning around 10am, and we had an easy and uneventful 2 hour drive. We rocked out to the CDs I bought JR for Christmas: The Essential Michael Jackson, Phil Collins’ Hits, Tracy Chapman Collection, Garth Brooks Ultimate Hits, and perhaps most importantly, I Will Always Love You: The Very Best of Whitney Houston.
Important backstory: Years ago, when we were living in German Village, our car was broken into and my immense, treasured CD collection was stolen. I’m still sad about the injustice. It had almost every CD I’ve ever owned, from every phase of my life and some of my more questionable musical choices. From Green Day’s Dookie to Aerosmith’s Permanent Vacation and Get a Grip, Bon Jovi’s Cross Road and These Days to Tupac’s Greatest Hits and Nelly’s Country Grammar, all the Garth Brooks CDs, and almost everything from Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw. Maybe the bigger blow was the loss of my mix CDs, labors of love from high school through college and law school, CDs and songs that instantly brought me back to a certain place and time and held tons of memories. I could go on and on about this, but the point is, I lost all of my CDs and the few that JR had kept with mine. Since that time, too broken-hearted (and cheap) to replace them, I’ve only purchased a handful of new ones: All of Taylor Swifts albums, several Glee soundtracks, Guns N Roses Greatest Hits, and the Rock of Ages movie soundtrack. Not exactly easy listening for JR. It’s never been a big issue because we rarely drove in Kosovo, but now in Tbilisi we drive to work and almost every day, he complained about my beloved Taylor or Glee. So I decided to put him out of his misery and I bought CDs from some of his favorite artists for Christmas. The end.
Sighnaghi was quiet, chilly and beautiful. We stayed at the Kabadoni Hotel and our room had a great view of the valley and mountains. I’ve heard good things about the spa, but we didn’t try it this time. The town is quite small so it didn’t take long to walk around, and we made our way to the walking path along the city walls. There were a few towers you could attempt to climb up, but the stairs were not in good shape. JR the adventurer went up while I kept my two feet safely on the ground.
Please ignore my ridiculous face in this picture. I was joking about how I see all these people on FB/IG doing this sly, closed mouth smile at the camera, and I said I should try that instead of my normal big teeth, lots o’gums grin. And well, you can see how well that worked for me. BUT – it’s a beautiful picture of the mountains – those are mountains, not clouds! – in the background.
We went to Pheasant’s Tears for dinner and wine. The server asked “Do you trust our chef, we do not have a menu?” and I felt a little panicky. I smiled and said, “Sure, but I mostly like chicken and bread.” She brought out several wines for us to taste and once we picked our favorites, we did not have long to wait before the dishes started to appear. Fresh Georgian bread, cheese and yogurt, spinach with caramelized onions, vegetable bean stew, khinkali with potatoes and onions (my favorite!), and some delicious chicken. It was so much food, and it was really good. The restaurant was cozy and inviting and the service was excellent. We will be sure to go back.
In the morning we had a quick breakfast at the hotel, took one last long look at the mountains, and then made our way back to Tbilisi. It was the perfect choice for a night out of town, and I think we’ll try to go back in the summer!
View from our balcony