Road Journal 9/1/14

We left St. Paul mid morning on Saturday heading to Chicago. There were many grumbles about the rental car from the boys since the jeep grand Cherokee they wanted wasn’t available and I had ended up with a 2015 Ford explorer instead.

We hit some shitty weather in Wisconsin, torrential downpours that reduced visibility down to maybe 6 feet in front of us, I was a bit nervous but my brother drove through it like a pro, gotta love the traction control a 4 wheel drive vehicle offers. Avoided all the speed traps and fundraising police dotting the road, but the lottery ticket we picked up wasn’t the jackpot one…yet.

Got to Chicago around 7pm and met my relatives at their lake side condo in downtown to park and drop our stuff off for the night. Took a quick walk to Navy Pier with my camera to try and get some sunset shots. It was so crowded I wasn’t able to get the positioning I wanted but I managed to get a few decent shots in. Headed back to the condo for dinner and then the husband and I took my camera for a walk to Millennium Park.

There was a jazz festival going on so the park was full of people, most of them drunk. Took a few shots of the bean and then trekked to Buckingham Fountain for some more pics before heading back to the condo. Got back and went up to the roof for some night shots of the city and then it was time for bed.

Got up before sunrise and headed to the roof again for some early morning shots. Went back down for breakfast and then the boys and I walked to the Sky deck only to find out it was closed due to elevator issues. The lady looked at husband like he was crazy when he asked if we could use the stairs and told us no. Went back to the condo and packed up our stuff so we could start the next leg of our drive.

Headed east out of Chicago around 10:30, me driving, and debated if we wanted to pay tolls or not. We weren’t going to but when it added over 2 hours to our journey I said Fuck it and got back on I80 east. Drove for over 5 uneventful hours, pissing off truckers that I was drafting behind, before relinquishing the driver’s seat over to husband.

By midnight I was so tired I couldn’t keep my eyes open and 80 miles from our next stop I fell asleep in an uncomfortable sitting up position. Woke up to husband asking me to read off directions his friend had sent to navigate us to her house that gps can’t find. He wouldn’t listen to my/her directions and followed the fictitious advisement of his gps instead and so of course we got lost.

He gave me his friend’s phone number and had me call her to get new directions. Either he said the number wrong or I typed it in wrong in my sleep induced haze but I ended up calling a stranger at almost 2am, she wasn’t impressed. Gave the phone to brother and grumpily told him to call her, he navigated us to the right spot and we hung out by a fire eating some delicious grilled chicken till I crashed a little after 4 a.m..

Woke up to the sounds of birds calling to one another and insects galore (we slept in a tent in the yard so brother could take the comfortable bed this time) and everyone else fast asleep at 7am. Soon we’ll have breakfast and then it’s about an hour and a half till we hit Manhattan. I’m excited for New York and it’s husband’s birthday today. So far the trip has been great.