Dropped the Old Home off at a nice garage near Midway Airport early this morning, boarded SWA flight 1601 to Oakland where we were picked up by Adam and thus made our way back to San Ramon. We are very excited to see “the kids” and friends; not so excited to see doctors, dentists, and court clerks (jury duty awaits…). Mostly feeling very satisfied with our wonderful time in Chicago this past month. Before recapping the last few days, we want to thank all of our Chicago family and friends for making our visit so incredibly enjoyable. By far the best part of our visit was the time spent with all of you. So thanks again for your generosity, your companionship, and your willingness to visit with us time and time again. We miss you all already.
May as well start with a food update (the latest installment in our eating across America segment). Thursday night we dined at Cantina Loread0, a really nice Mexican restaurant located right in our River North neighborhood. Loved the guacamole (made fresh at the table) and fajitas. Robin enjoyed the enchiladas.
Friday we were invited to play golf with Al and Ruthie Pearlman at their club in Hawthorne Woods and then to dinner at their home. Al, hobbled by a bad big toe, shot an 88. The rest of us, in spite of our scores, still had a great time. As a bonus we got to play with Theo (a much needed dog fix for us), their gentle giant of a yellow lab. We had a blast and are very much looking forward to exploring Niagara Falls in August with Al & Ruthie.
Saturday morning Robin and (sister) Debbie walked the River and Lake Front trail and had breakfast at Rockits, while I got in my last Chicago run. We then cleaned up and walked to the Lincoln Park Zoo where we hooked up with Chuck, Rachel, Ari, Lital and Yuval Rosenberg. Our big excitement at the zoo came courtesy of a particularly rambunctious white cheeked gibbon.
I was standing on the sidewalk next to the outdoor cage at the Helen Brach Primate House, talking on the phone to Adam Gamoran (another childhood friend, now lives in NYC….so making plans!! Very exciting.) when all of the sudden there is a bit of commotion and Robin grabs my arm and yanks me away from the cage. Turns out one of the male white cheeked gibbons climbed up to the highest corner of the cage as close to me as possible, took aim, and started urinating from up high in my direction. Thanks to my quick thinking (and agile) wife, his Simian stream missed me by mere inches (whew). It was actually quite amazing to see the amount of pee that came out of this animal. Gibbons must be 75% bladder. Sure came close to one of life’s most embarrassing moments!
After parting ways (Rachel to a Bar Mitzvah, Ari, Lital and Yuval to dinner and bedtime), Chuck, Robin and myself went to Eataly for dinner (great pasta) and then to the Chicago Blues Festival in Grant Park where we were just in time to catch the evening’s finale (Bettye LeVette singing Before the Money Came).
Sunday morning we went to the Old Town Art Fair with Linda and then out to lunch at Castaways, this really cool bar and grill located on North Avenue Beach. Great views, great food, great company!
We said our goodbyes, went back to our apartment and spent the rest of the afternoon packing the car. We were debating on the location for our final dinner when we got a call from Janie and Al Murow (traveling buds from Sedona and Scottsdale) who had just arrived in Chicago following their niece’s wedding in Fort Wayne Indiana. They were on their way to a small reunion dinner with some of Al and Steve’s (Al’s big brother) childhood friends but the friends cancelled so we gladly filled in. Here we are with Janie, Al, Steve and Jeanie at Rosebuds on Rush.
As always it was a fun evening filled with lots of laughs and it was a wonderful unexpected treat for us to see you guys during our 12 hour overlap in Chicago. Thanks again for dinner and drinks (and drinks). Enjoy your time downtown. We’re pretty envious! Looking forward to our trip to Montreal and Quebec City.
We plan to keep blogging during our trip intermission in San Ramon. Here are a few parting pictures from our time in Chicago.