Friday, July 06, 2007

Family, and the Fourth

I've been without internet for the past few days. That's my current excuse for not updating this thing sooner. I finally paid the bill in full and now I am connected to the internet again.

Monday was nothing special. Work and tutoring. I kept playing with my funny character who was on a crashed plane and has now established his own contested country. The series of short stories I originally had planned to do with this character is quickly becoming a novel or novella. I'm trying to figure out a way to make a satisfying conclusion, or what exactly the story arc is... As of now I think I am just going to keep writing the little scenes.

Tuesday was the third. My mom and my roommate's parent's came in to town to celebrate the Fourth of July with us. We met them at the train station around noon and went to lunch at the Eleven City Diner, which we fondly refer to as Elevenses. The best part about this diner, other than the food, is the awesome wait staff. They're a feisty bunch. My mom ordered a reuben which comes with either just corned beef, or corned beef and pastrami. Mom was debating between the two and decided to go with the straight corned beef. The waitress responded with a curt "why?" and then badgered my mom until she ordered it with pastrami (a homemade recipe). It was all in good fun, but I think only the wait staff at elevenses could get away with such a blunt manner.

After that, stuffed to the gills, we took them to the Taste of Chicago. It was about the same as the last entry. Wall to wall people, and expensive food. Then we went and toured Shedd's Aquarium (my second time this month). It was about the same as the previous time, except for the majorly depressed Sea Lion, which had been replaced with a more peppy and athletic one. For dinner we went to the Berghoff, a local brewery and restaurant, where we tried the beers, and their awesome food.

This was followed by joining what seemed like millions of people along the lake front and Grant Park for the fireworks. Chicago does their major fireworks display on the third. I learned that this was because of the police department. If they were to do it on the fourth it would cost them time and a half for each of the police officers on duty (which is a really big number), and would drive up the costs to the point where it would be almost undoable. The weather held until the very end of the fireworks, and we managed to make it from Grant Park to the car while getting only marginally wet. Watching that mass of people move across Grant Park was like seeing a large riot scene from the movies. There was an innumerable crowd flocking over the hills surrounding the baseball diamonds and across the bridges over the Metra Rails.

The Fourth was spent in and out of grocery stores, filling Matt's and my larder for the first time ever. It was nice actually being able to see a cupboard full of food. And with all the fixin's I'll probably be throwing a spaghetti dinner sometime in the next week to start to break into the load of food.

Afterword we came back and I picked my Mom's brain about the history of our cottage at Houghton Lake for a 10 page paper I had to write. And that was what today was, between work and class. Writing a 10 page paper in two hours. A new accomplishment for me.

Tomorrow I head back to Haslett for the annual bike ride from Haslett Community Church to Northwoods Boy Scout Reservation. I'll have an update with photos that sunday night if I'm not too tired.

I found this great article which has spawned some ideas for a story I started in class. It's about Kumaris, or living goddesses. A practice from Nepal.

The semester ends in a week. And I'm not counting at all...