Tag Archives: IL

Day 7 – Iowa City

—— Converted from outline form: 2013-5-29 ——

Iowa city is pretty much equal distance between each coast of the USA. Or at least I thought that was true until I did a google maps search right now, but generally it’s in the middle of everything. And there is nothing, nothing there as we found out.

We woke up to raining weather. Walked over to the dealership and talked to them. I think they hadn’t seen the form that we filled out so we explained the problem and they said they would look at it. We went back to the hotel for a bit and then went out to explore the incredible town of Iowa City. I am mostly certain that we were along 2nd St, close to 4th Ave, which is a little out of the main downtown area but there should have been a few things.

We walked down 2nd and along a back street through the small town, I’m guessing this was Coralville. Got some gummy worms to eat and hung out in a video game store for a bit. We sat in the park. Skipped some rocks. Yelled at ducks, especially the rejected white one. Then it started really raining hard and we just kind of walked through it all getting soaked.

We went back to the dealership and they said they would try to have it done that night, and would most likely have it done by the next day, so we went back to the hotel and rented it for another night. After relaxing for a while the dealership called and said they fixed the car, and the total cost would be around $400. Overjoyed we went back and picked up the car. Checked out of the hotel but we didn’t ask for a refund because we didn’t really want to / note: I don’t remember that.

Headed off to Chicago, driving through more of the nothingness that makes up the midwest. And then we crossed the Mississippi River for the first time! Since it was such a momentous occasion we stopped and browsed around the information shop. I remember looking through the periscope at the river and seeing… a river. Anyhow, continued on our way through bad weather and arrived in Chicago at night.

We were staying with my family friends the Rivoire’s, who had a very nice home in a high class suburb. Bob Rivoire had grown up with my mother’s family and I had seen him a few times at family gatherings. We had a nice conversation about our journey and Bob even ordered some real Chicago deep dish pizza. To this day I don’t think I’ve ever had a better deep dish pizza than the one that night.

After a long journey we eventually slept.

Day 8 – Chicago

—— Converted from outline form: 2013-8-11 ——

In the morning we went to the local suburb to get some coffee and bagels to eat, and then got two two-way tickets for the train. Took the train into the downtown area and I believe we were a little lost. Walked a couple blocks one direction, and then another few blocks another direction. We arrived at the park by the shore of the lake and hung out there a bit. The weather wasn’t very incredible, but there was a nice fountain, a weird statue that had water spraying at it like some weird water sports fetish, and some geese and fish that we watched. Got some hot dogs and sat on the side of the lake. Then we got up and walked towards the downtown, and noticed there was a blues festival happening. And actually it some some large blues festival, although it hadn’t really started going yet.

Made our way to the Sears Tower (I believe the name has changed since) and bought tickets to go up the tower. Of course since the weather was horrible, there wasn’t anything to see, just a whole bunch of clouds and occasionally the tops of some other towers. We lounged around up there trying to make the most of it before heading back down and returned to the blues festival to hang out some more.

We sat at the edge of the lake some more throwing ice into the water, which attracted ducks and fish, and after a while we got up to secure a good place on the lawn at the blues festival. Waited there a while, and they finally started, but the blues being played were not so impressive and felt very generic.

After we got tired we went back, finally found the train station. I refused to give money to some homeless man, and then he called me racist, which really aggravated me a lot. And I couldn’t find my return ticket on the way back so I had to buy another one.

Anyhow, back at the house Sean and I went on a walk around the neighborhood. It was a nice, very American style suburb area, one you would expect home made pies sitting on window sills (but who does that anyway? anyone?)

We were walking around when something attracted my attention. I caught a flash of something or other from the corner of my eye. I asked Sean if he had seen it and he hadn’t, so at first I thought I was going crazy. And then saw it again. And then upon paying more careful attention, I discovered they were fireflies everywhere! This was my first time ever seeing fireflies, so of course I wanted to watch them more.

It says in my outline that we “made eggs” but I don’t remember that at all. I do remember playing with Bob’s two shelties, which were adorable dogs.