I Love Going Places, I Just Hate Getting There

I love going places; I just hate getting there.  Chicago has been a whirlwind of activity.  Lincoln Park Zoo, rode the rapid transit system downtown, let our kids play on the Picasso, Kiddieland (the best kids’ amusement park), family, family, family, friends, friends, Morton’s Arboretum, American Girl Place and, of course, Lou Malnati’s (pizza), Portillos and Buona Beef (Italian Beef sandwiches and sausage sandwiches).  Our kids have been great;  sweet, fantastic, cooperative, though they’re super-tired.  In addition to being broke, we’re wiped out…. Here are other tidbits from our “vacation…”

  • On our drive to the Reno airport, our car broke down… Dead.  Forever.  Wait on side of road in desert for a blink-short-of-eternity… till tow truck arrives.
  • Got towed to shop (30 miles, family of 4)… new water pump, new serpentine… dead car.  The engine’s blown.  Beg mechanic to leave car on his lot while family visits chicago.  Permission granted.
  • Stay overnight in hotel (cheap).  Spend tons of money in kid’s arcade (expensive).
  • Flights delayed.  Arrive Chicago 4:30 AM.  Everybody’s miserable.
  • Hey… all our luggage arrived!  Oh Happy Day!
  • Crawl in beds in my cousin’s (empty) condo.  Overtired. Poor sleep.
  • Work on solution for the van stuck in Reno.  I have 2 hours to deal with this on the return flight home due to other obligations.  I have to get the van out of the mechanic’s lot (it won’t start), I have to dispose of it (Charity? Salvage? Sale?).  I have to get my family back to home safe and sound… as fast as possible.  Please pray.   I do have a buyer, but it’s all been negotiated over the phone… and I hope the buyer comes thru (you go, Craigslist!).
  • Either rent or buy a car to get back to Redding… yikes!
  • Still finishing up powerpoint for an upcoming Africa trip.
  • And to top it all off… I got a man-cold… “Poor little bunny…”

Our biggest life lessons:  1) It’s the humidity, not the heat.  Chicago is 85 and humid AND uncomfortable, worse than Redding in the high 90’s.  2) Don’t drive when the dashboard gages are out.  In my defense, when you’re in the middle of a desert with no signs of life, and your wife and kids, you do desperate things. 3) Be a hobbit, stay in the Shire, eat 9 times a day.  Don’t travel.

Coming up:  7 hours air plus 2 hours car stuff plus 4 hours driving.  Should be a HOOT.  I’ll let you know.

Is anybody out there working on Star Trek type TRANSPORTERS?  I’ll buy…

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8 thoughts on “I Love Going Places, I Just Hate Getting There

  1. Hey all,
    We had a similar day yesterday short version check your spare tire (changed 4 tires) (2 2 Xs). You win though. I don’t know when you guys return, but Jen and I don’t leave for Monterey until Tuesday. You know I’d come and get ya. just call me if you want a ride.

  2. Bill –

    Let me second what BB said, giving the family a ride is one of the few things I am qualified to do, I even know the way!

    I am busy on:
    7/30
    7/31
    8/5
    8/6
    The other days are open. BB and I could go together or if he is busy Kim and I will go, I have a van!

  3. You win the prize!! No doubt. Congratulations!!

    P.S. You still have your sense of humor, so all’s not lost….yet!

    And, if it helps at all, I’m sorry, really, poor little bunny.

  4. I’m thinking with all of the trouble/trials you’re having that you are going to be used by God in a wonderful way in Africa. I’ll be praying, as I’m sure will others.

  5. If you still want/need a reasonable solution, look for the email I sent you.

    I’m glad to hear great times and memories are still being had in the midst of the challenging times.

  6. Sorry about your van. When I listen to people talk about pastors and their “fancy” cars, I use you as a rebuttal. On a lighter note: Buono Beef, not Johnnie’s? You could show the kids the “warm and fuzzy” Chicago -style customer service.

  7. Bill,

    I’d come to Reno airport to get you, but I am in San Antonio, Texas.

    When you’re in Chicago, do not miss an opportunity for a fresh ribeye steak sandwich at BillyGoats on Lower Michigan Avenue — near the Wrigley Building (you will remember — “chiburgie, chiburgie… no coke–pepsi!”).

    Joe

  8. I have a few clients who can hook you up with replacement transportation. Want me to sic a salesman on ya?

    But seriously… they could help. Email me if ya want more info.

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