The road trip to the Windy city came and went as fast as the wind blows off Lake Michigan. We were gone 38 hours and spent 20 of those hours on the road in the silver bullet, that’s the nick name for our silver minivan. Using my Garmin GPSmap 60Cx (a farewell gift from the VA guys) we were able to make it to the city in record time, and by record time I mean we played every movie that we had and even a few from a stop at the Red Box in order to help keep peace in the back seat of the van. The GPS did a great job of showing the shortest distance to our hotel but not the fastest route. We were able to force the GPS to obey us and stick to highways for the drive home; it did a great job of recalculating the route when we refused to exit as it told us.
The boys were so excited about spending the night in a hotel that they were bouncing off the glass at the lobby check-in counter and we knew we were at a fancy La Quinta when the guy at the door was insistent on carrying our red cooler, duffel bag and laptop bag to our room. Our kids acted like they had never rode in an elevator before as they took turns pushing the button to our floor. The buttons in the elevator could have provided endless hours of entertainment but we only had a limited amount of time and we had a mission to accomplish.
We decided we would check out to see if we could walk to the consulate so we began the 12 block walk to Michigan and Lake. The boys had a blast looking at all the big buildings and Jonah made it almost 4 blocks before he had to be carried. We took a break in Millennium Park because they had tons of kids running around and playing in the fountains. Our two little ones who love to play in anything that gets them wet got stage fright and they just watched the other kids enjoy the cool water on the hot day in the city. They also had fun climbing on all the art work in the park, not sure if that was allowed but none of the security guards told us to get down. We walked the remaining few blocks and decided that since we were dripping in sweat that we would need to take a cab to our appointment the following morning.On our way back to the hotel we stopped for a bite to eat and asked the boys if they wanted to go to the top of the tallest building in the city. They thought that sounded like fun so off to the Sears tower we went. The boys loved pointing to the little cars as they looked down from the 99th floor, the 103 floor opens up next month for a new Sears Tower viewing experience. Even though it was past bed time we agreed to a quick dip in the hotel pool before retiring for the night.
The next morning we ate our breakfast and flagged the boy’s first taxi and headed off to our appointments. We arrived on Anderson time, meaning we were there an hour early. I thought for sure it would take more time to get there and go through security. So we sat and waited for the consulate to open since we had the first appointment of the day. Our interview was not what we had anticipated and it went quickly and we had all the correct documentation and now we are just waiting for their final approval.
We headed back to pick up the silver bullet and we were on our way back to Pleasant Hill. It was enjoyably uneventful and the boys were glad to get home even if it is for just home for a few more days.