Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New York to Chicago to Cleveland to New York!

On Thursday night at 10:30pm Abe and I got into our rented Prius and hit the road. Destination: Chicago, Illinois for the Renegade Craft Fair.

We decided to drive overnight to avoid traffic, which was a pretty good idea, but maybe not the best idea. I drove for the first few hours and then Abe took over. From 2 to 6am we were able to pass the time by calling into our friends' radio show Night People on WFMU. If you click on that link you'll actually be able to list to the show and if you fast forwad to the last 30 minutes you can hear us get punchy and hilarious around 5:45am. It was decided that Abe would be the designated Mantlehand since he was going to be awake for a long time (we were about 400 miles from Chicago at this point), which means he would carry everything covered during the night into the day much like the person carrying the Olympic torch.

Somewhere in Ohio at 8:30am we stopped at a rest area and passed out for an hour. Then we got up and had McDonald's breakfast burritos and drove till we hit Chicago. This is when the rain started, and it didn't stop for 3 days.

We stayed at the Red Roof Inn in Arlington Heights, Illinois (20 miles outside of Chicago). It wasn't the most convenient hotel, but it was the cheapest and it was surprisingly nice. We were situated on a huge strip of fast food restaurants and discount big box stores. It was actually kind of fun but also gross.

Saturday we woke up and it was POURING rain - like out of control. I thought the Renegade Craft Fair would be shut down, but we drove into Wicker Park to check it out. Once we arrived the rain had subsided a little bit and we saw that everyone was setting up and people were out on the streets browsing the booths. Luckily we were able to set up the tent while the rain took a quick break.

Behind the scenes puddle.

Once we were set up the rain started to come back down in buckets - at least it kept us busy - there was always something to protect or dry or go get from the store. Abe is the most wonderful boyfriend in the entire world. He made countless trips to KMart, running through the rain, to pick up plastic sheeting, tarps, and a lantern.

By Saturday afternoon I was able to relax.

Sunday was more of the same! We had broken everything down the night before, which was a pain, but at least we didn't come back to a mess like this:

Abe had to go get the tarp so we could put it over the roof because the canopy was no longer water resistant.

The roof! The roof! The roof is not on fire! ...It's actually soaking wet.

However, by 4:15 pm the rain had stopped and - what's that? Sun? Really? Yes! It was sun!! We took off the tarps, and ever took off the canopy! The fair went until 10pm and the rest of the day was very enjoyable and we were even able to dry out a lot of our stuff before packing up.

Transaction in action.

Crazy times.

Monday morning we hit the road again and made our way back to New York City. When we got to Cleveland, Ohio Abe and I decided to get out of the car for a little while and see Cleveland - why not? We went to some park on Lake Erie. I'm kind of obsessed with the Great Lakes ever since I went to Minnesota.

Me texting the most famous Clevelandite I know, Dave Hill

We were leaving Cleveland and Abe saw the lights on at Jacobs Field because there was an Indians game going on. His goal is to see all the baseball stadiums in the US so I really couldn't deny him the chance the knock another off this list. We were able to get incredible seats for $6 each from some guy on the street. The stadium is fairly new and huge - and clean (I've only been to Fenway Park, Shea Stadium, and Yankee Stadium so this was kind of nuts to me). We stayed for 3 innings and then hit the road again.

Weird mascot with hairy nose.

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