Sunday, August 23, 2009

Let's do this

Chicago: Days 3+4

After getting some rest and recovering from the night before, I called the service station as soon as they were opening up. While we had been told that a mechanic would be in on Sunday, several phone calls finally informed us that he wouldn't, that he didn't have a phone, and that there was no way to find out when he would be in. As you can imagine, this was frustrating. We searched for other places to take my poor car, but no one was open on Sunday. So, we decided to make the best of our extra day and just enjoy Chicago.

This ended up being possibly my favorite day of the trip. We walked around downtown and just enjoyed the city and sunshine (it was 96 that day). We ended up in a garden that was right next to Grant Park. In the garden there was an area to sit and put your feet in water. After days on our feet, it was heavenly. We could hear all of the music across the street and heard a couple of really good sets for free. After pulling ourselves away from the water, we found a shady area and painted our nails. If that isn't quality girl time, I don't know what is. We finally headed home, ordered a true, Chicago-style pizza, and watched movies. If you're going to be stuck somewhere, this is how it should be.

The next morning, I called the service station again and actually got to talk to a mechanic this time. He assured me that my car would be looked at within two hours. We set out for breakfast and felt timidly hopeful that good news and a quick fix were on the way. We both agreed that, however nice the trip was, we wanted this to be our last meal in Chicago.

The rest of this story, probably the most dramatic, would take a long time to tell. In short, I was informed that I would need a new engine. When you're stuck in another city, 6 hours from home, tired, wearing the same clothes as you were yesterday, and sleeping in a recliner, this is not what you want to hear. A few phone calls later, we learned that we could "probably" make it home with the current engine. We picked my car up, packed our stuff in, and took off. There was a definite "let's do this thing" feel to it all. It took us eight hours, but we made it, and my car is still running. I have to give props to the BFF, who helped me keep it together and made me laugh more than I ever have before. Despite the fact that almost everything went wrong at some point, we had an amazing time!

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