Saturday, July 11, 2009

Chicago, Chicago, that toddlin' town

OK! So here is the much anticipated post about Chicago. Forgive the formatting.
In pictures, this is going to be a better story than even I, Ms. Hyperbole, could develop to explain our adventures in the Windy City.

So, VKT and I are heading off to Chicago so I can submit the paperwork to get a Visa for Spain. Two thumbs up for traveling to other countries with the correct documentation. Anyway, since we are po' folk, we opt to go to Chicago via bus rather than fly or pay for the gas to drive 8 hours. This is such a brill setup! We go to the bus stop at 8:00 pm, roll out around 9:00 pm and the next morning at 7:00 am we are all of a sudden in Chicago!

To clarify, 'all of a sudden' would be so nice. However, this voyage went a little more like this: start off excited and antsy! Try to sleep for the few hours before the first stop. Freeze to death. Wake up in Columbia for a potty break. Get yelled at for going up the wrong stairs in the bus. Stop in St. Louis to pick up more passengers (thank goodness, the 8 of us didn't take up much space on the bus, but luckily I got to stretch out a bit [however useless it was]). Have some jerks sit RIGHT BEHIND US despite THE ENTIRE BUS BEING PRACTICALLY EMPTY and them kneeing my seats. Freeze to death a little more. Wake up in Illinois!

Mk, so, after waking up in Chicago we prioritize our needs, find a baƱo and then a little cafe for breakfast. Using Val's totally bomb GPS, we manage to not find any of the restaurants that showed up on the map.

But we do have a bite to eat before going to a fancypants hotel to change clothes for my meeting with the Consulate.

In a grand total of two minutes, I had submitted all my paperwork and been told how to proceed to pick up the actual Visa. You read that right, after a ten hour bus ride, a few hours looking for a place to eat and change our clothes, the purpose of the entire trip was over in two minutes. Epic.

So, after that, the second most important part of the trip: The Shedd Aquarium! Because we were there so ridiculously early (showing up early for the meeting and not taking as long as planned definitely helped), we basically zoomed right through. And among the displays, we caught up on what was needed most:

Being protective of imaginary young.
And general goofing off with a photo safari.
And look at these losers who had to wait OUTSIDE while we were busy watching dolphins, sharks, motivating children to participate in the activities (if we don't start wearing penguin suits, who will?) and pretending to read the displays! Ha!
After the aquarium, we went to Millennium Park to look at the interesting structures, like the bean, the faces, the amphitheater, etc.

And after hearing some distant music, Val and I venture beyond the lawn to find... The Taste of Chicago! This is huge! What are the odds that the less than 24 hours we were to be in Chicago we would be able to go to this festival!
After that, we wandered around a little bit, ate some ice cream, Chicago style pizza, a midori marg, walking around the 'miracle/magnificent mile' and general picture taking.
A piece of John Brown's cabin from good ol' KS.

The L.
Well, that was about it! We fit about three days of activities into one! And we ate and drank lots, too! We hit up a tapas restaurant before peacing out and enjoyed some white wine sangria, croquetas, potatas bravas and more white wine sangria. We are osom. All that was left to do was be at the bus station before 11:55 pm to drive another few hours before arriving back in KC. Victory!

So that was pretty much the haps for Chicago. Very exciting! And a new experience for me, can't complain there! Okie dokie, good reading, see you next time! Keep it osom!

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