Ah, vacation. How I miss you.
Honey and I had a blast in Chicago. Rather than bore you with a play-by-play travelogue, I’ll just hit the highlights (with a few pics thrown in for good measure; see the rest at my Flickr.)
getting away from it all for four days … great food, especially breakfast at L’Appetito, lunch at Fox & Obel and this amazing trattoria in Old Town … riotous show (The Pratfalls of Civilization) at Second City … beautiful weather, perfect for wearing jeans (in September, no less) … awesome shopping, including H&M, a comic book store, The Land of Nod, Lucy (my new favorite store for me), Paper Source and about a dozen little boutiques in Lincoln Park … loving Wicked just as much the second time as the first … gorgeous lake views
sore feet from walking about eight miles a day … blazing hot weather our last day there … not enough reasonably priced breakfast places near our hotel … walking back from Second City to Michigan Avenue at 1 a.m. (just a little dicey in parts) … losing my microfiber hair towel I brought from home to an over-zealous housekeeping team … some of the exhibits at the Museum of Contemporary Art
rude, rude, RUDE hotel guests who weren’t considerate of other guests (especially at 3 a.m.) … panhandlers who don’t look like they needed to be panhandling … ridiculously long lines (2+ hours) at pizza places …
I had another of those “small world” moments during our trip. Let me set it up for you first: When we travel, we prefer to eat at local restaurants and we try to avoid eating at the same place twice. On Saturday, Honey and I took a cab to the Lincoln Park neighborhood for a little shopping. We noticed a restaurant sign that looked rather familiar and realized that we’d found another location for a place we’ve patronized here in Atlanta. OK, cross that one off the list, right?
As luck would have it, circumstances (eating later, limited choices, long lines and no seating) led us back to Uncle Julio’s Hacienda for lunch. I had a lovely vantage point for the restroom doors and, about halfway through our meal, noticed a woman exiting the bathroom, a small baby in her arms. She walked closer, her table not far from ours. And I realized, with a start, that I knew her. And she had the same realization at about the same time. We are from the same small Alabama town and actually were in dance together many, many years ago. In fact, I graduated from high school with her brother (she’s a little younger than me) and we probably have not seen each other in 20 years.
There we were, in the same place, at the same time. Me, on vacation and breaking the rules. Her, out to lunch with her new baby and a friend. In a city of nearly 3 million people, you’re bound to run into somebody you know.