DC to Chicago

Chicago Travel Blog

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Well, friends and family, I made it to Chicago!

The first two days were spent in WV with my family.  Our annual trek to the Treasure Mountain Festival in our hometown.  Had a great time with my family, ate my way across Franklin, almost took one of those "you'll regret this when you're a teenager" pictures of my 1-year-old nephew, naked in his bath with a cowboy hat on.  I couldn't get to my camera fast enough, unfortunately, it would have been a classic! 

On Sunday, drove across WV to Columbus OH.  WV is much lumpier on the eastern side than the western side.  Or maybe they have just spent more money on wide roads on the western side.  I crossed the Allegheny Mountain and a bunch more.  Boy, it was just up and down and up and down and up and down. 

Stayed in a very nice KOA campground on Sunday night outside Columbus OH.  Large with tons of RVs.  I was the only tent camper.  Given that it got down to about 42 Sunday night, I understand why!  But I got the tent up by myself. 

I learned that its brandname -- Summer Breeze -- is not just poetic license. 

I learned that I left the recharger to the airpump for the air mattress at home.


I learned that it takes about 2 hours, with breaks, to blow up a queen-size air mattress by myself.

I learned that my camp stove gets water really hot but not quite hot enough to boil, making it darned difficult to make spaghetti!  I learned that my homemade soup was pretty good though.

I learned that if I sleep with the sleeping bag, the wool blanket, the wool hat, and George, the teddy bear, I'll be warm enough.  :)  Even my always-cold nose.

The next day, I learned the lessons of 3/4:  never let your gas tank get below 3/4 empty or your bladder get more than 3/4 full.  Still gotta learn to pace myself on those 2-liter water bottles!

Found my way into Chicago and even found a primo parking space right in front of Charlie's apartment building!!  Driving back into Chicago was bringing back the memory of every stupid thing I did while I lived here AND bringing back all their names and faces!!  It was very trippy. 

It's been a joy to spend time with Charlie.  Went out to dinner with two of his friends Monday night and had a great time.  Sat up and talked till midnight.  His couch is quite comfy.

Went out for Chicago-famous cinammon rolls at Ann Sathers.  Charlie then went to spend the day studying and I walked.  And walked.  And walked.  I walked all afternoon.  About 6 miles.  From the north side (Belmont, for those of you who know Chicago) down to DePaul at State and Jackson.  Saw some things I remembered.  Saw a lot of stuff I'd forgotten about.  The weather was cool -- the high today was 55 -- but sunny and bright.  Really, a perfect day for walking.  My feet were even a little tired by the end. 

Watched "Buffy, The Vampire Slayer" at Charlie's place, waiting for him to come home from school.  Changed some of my tent camping reservations to camping cabin reservations....

Tomorrow may be the Art Institute or the Chicago Historical Society.  It for sure will include laundry and drinks with an old roommate. 

The trip from Columbus to here was 400 miles.  I learned that my preferred limit in the Jeep is 300 miles.  Thursday is, unfortunately, also a 400-mile day.  But at the end is a hotel room, courtesy of my father-in-law!!  A whole bed just for me.  :)  Central heating and everything.  George won't know how to behave.  Fortunately, he's a stuffed bear.  His options are limited.

Not much else to report so far.  This part of the trip is just about getting from Point A to Point B.  It'll get more interesting after I leave Chicago and head into what is for me virgin territory. 

For today, this is just a note to let you all know I'm doing fine and things are going about as expected (knock wood).  Talk to you all later.

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photo by: mahoney