Chicago, IL

Disclaimer: This blog was written at a significant delay (October 2018). As in, the delay was so significant, that I don’t feel that I can accurately represent our time at this location in story form. So, I am just going to post photos I captured here and then ramble about some of my clear memories of the place via some bullet points.

How did I get so far behind? Well, there was a summer visit from a nephew, and also a giant party in Rochester that needed to be planned for. But, also, if it comes down to blog writing or sleep – I will always choose sleep. So anyways, back on the blog game. But in abbreviated form until I catch up to the present day.


TLDR: Chicago is as cool as an otter eating cotton candy while riding a scooter, heading to President Obama’s house.

Yeah, it’s a cool place. We loved being in Chicago. Even if that meant being serenaded by air brakes and air horns all day and randomly having to move Dyna a few feet on occasion to avoid being clipped by a semi-truck.

  • We rolled into Chicago on a Saturday afternoon. We decided to hang out at the Truck Marshalling yard for the week, fully prepared to be surrounded by long haul tractor trailers. And we weren’t disappointed. We got to hang out with plenty of semi-trucks. We drifted off to sleep to the lull of engines idling, woke to air brakes popping, and at one point had to beg a semi driver to pause a moment so Jake could move Dyna back a few feet rather than allowing the semi truck that was being driven by the driver to side swipe our beautiful beast.
    • But, you can’t beat the location of the Truck Marshalling yard in Chicago. I ran down into the city via the lake side trail almost every day. We rode our bikes into the city almost every evening. We only used the Jeep to go into the city once – and that was to get the oil changed on the Jeep.
    • We continue to hone our dry camping skills. 3 years into our life with Dyna and we’ve figured out that if we are dry camping, and we don’t get at least a few hours of sunshine over a few days, we’re screwed in terms of engine batteries. But Jake figured out a new method of charging our engine battery via our generator, because that has never been something Dyna is interested in doing herself. So, now Jake forces our big b*tch to accept an engine battery charge by plugging an extension cord from our bedroom outlet, through the bedroom window, to a trickle charger that is hooked up to the engine battery. I guess we could set-up the same ‘situation’ via the outlet in our storage bay, but the bedroom jimmy-rigging is much more exciting.
    • Giant parking lots full of diesel fumes and the occasional pee filled water bottle strewn about are still subject to beautiful sunsets and sunrises.
  • We got to celebrate the day my mom evicted me from her womb in Chicago. Which was super cool because one of my very best friends lives in Chicago. So that meant we got to drink candy drinks with Meggy, my G, to celebrate another year of me not having developed diabetes. Not that diabetes is a joke. Because it’s not. It sucks. A lot. But I still don’t have it, so thank you candy gods and running gods and sometimes I eat vegetable gods for that.
    • Jake ‘pulled a Jake’ and with the help of Meggy, surprised me and took me to a taping of ‘Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me!’¬†at the Chase Auditorium Theatre in Downtown Chicago. I had no idea that this was happening until we were waiting in line for tickets. It was amazing. I love me some ‘Wait, Wait!’ I almost peed my pants out of excitement when I realized what was happening, but I held it together. Because I didn’t want Bill Curtis to see me for the first time and me have pee pants.
    • While we waited for ‘Wait, Wait’ to start, Jake took me down the street to Goddess and The Baker, where they bake and distribute the best cake I think I’ve ever tasted. AND it was rainbow. If you are ever in Chicago please go get yourself a piece of that rainbow delight. The Diabetes gods are forgiving when it comes to rainbow cake, I promise.

 

We spent some time playing tourist (one of my favorite games to play!) in Chicago.

  • We spent several days trying to eat one of those deep dish creations Chicago tries to convince the rest of the world is pizza. I think they should call it something else. Like ‘Tomato Slop’. Or ‘Pile of Pizza Ingredients That is Not Actually Pizza (PPITNAP)’.
  • We ran and biked into the city several times, then just walked around. The buildings hanging onto the edge of that green river are intriguing. There is a shitton of art work in the form of sculptures of a giant bean and falling water and shooting water and stagnant water everywhere. There is the Navy Pier for walking around and people watching.
  • There are restaurants and sweets shops calling your name around every block. We ate at as many as we could manage during our short visit. Jake ate a Chicago Dog and I ate his french fries, we spent an afternoon drinking wine and eating Arancini Balls at Eataly (which is the best name for a restaurant/store smash-up ever), and we stopped for donuts at Stan’s because sugar was low.

Chicago is mad cool and we like it. And would be willing to spend many more nights in an overpriced parking lot so we can hang out there again.