Monthly Archives: August 2008

Postcard from Columbus

takaza and I are halfway through a lovely weekend in Columbus, Ohio, staying with fordshepherd and kai_darkwolf. We were able to scoot out of Chicago earlier than expected, at about 11 AM on Friday. Traffic was surprisingly light and we made it to Columbus in less than seven hours. Because we are horrible guests, we surprised Ford and Jack with a call saying we would be earlier than expected, but they handled it with aplomb. After some pleasant chatting and a tour of their lovely house. It reminds me of how much I really loved my bungalow in Joliet, subsiding foundation, collapsed sewer tile, and all. For dinner we went to the Elevator Brewing and Draught Haus. The food was quite tasty, though the beer was somewhat lacking. The company more than made up for that, though. And yes, visiting their place reminds me that we need a dog(s), since I’m really enjoying being around Nathan, Pete, and the visiting Jazz.

Yesterday we had a somewhat early start as we met up with Rob and Dean (alas, I can’t recall Rob’s furry handle, but Dean is SeetherWolf) at the Center of Science and Industry (COSI) and an entertaining tour of the CSI exhibit (“Darn, I left my syrup of ipecac at home!”). After wandering around a bit we adjourned for a tasty lunch at Ted’s Montana Grill where we amused our waitron muchly with silliness. The evening brought a great party with about 15 people, some truly amazing marinated and grilled pork tenderloins, and lots of beer. Life was good. I was amused to hear that Dan knows Dean from about ten years ago (and hey steviemaxwell – Dean says hi!). Furry fandom is indeed a small town. It was great to see some familiar faces (Alaskanwolf, kwik, truegrave9) and make some new friends.

As for today? Probably a lot more laid back. We’ll seek some lunch eventually, maybe meet up with Kwik, and there were rumors of going to see a movie. Maybe. Who knows? We’re having a blast, that’s all that matters. I’m keeping an ongoing gallery of the weekend, sure to be updated more as the weekend goes on.

On a more serious note, I’m keeping an eye on Hurricane Gustav. Even though my links to New Orleans are somewhat tenuous (a year and a half at Tulane University over twenty years ago), I still have wonderful memories of my time there. Genet, I’m keeping your family in my thoughts and I’m hoping everyone rides out the storm OK. The same goes for everyone who has those they hold dear who are in the storm’s path. After the terrible events of three years ago, I dearly hope that there were some good lessons learned and that those will be well-applied over the coming days.

Well, that’s a bummer

One of the very few nearby non-Starbucks coffee houses, Prairie Croissant Cafe (a play on the Prairie Crossing development) is closing its doors after this weekend. This is bad news because it was a nice island of crunchy enviro-friendliness in the boring suburbs, with a touch of French gourmet food. Alas, the timing wasn’t right and their business model just won’t work in the current economy. What a shame.

Mongolian, French Toast, and Long Island Iced Tea: Now That Was an Awesome Weekend!

Man, what a crazy few days, and this week is shaping up to be pretty crazy too.

After work on Friday, I sped out slightly early and picked up takaza at his employer in Buffalo Grove. Then it was a stressful drive through Friday rush-hour traffic down to Lisle, where we checked into the Hyatt Lisle. After a short break it was back into the car for a short drive to Bolingbrook and BD’s Mongolian Grill. There we met up with ottr, datahawk, feren, lady_curmudgeon, roho, genet, linnaeus, wyldekyttin, and unclevlad for a fun dinner and drinks. Alas, I agree with Dan – I am kind of over BD’s. For one thing, it seems that no matter what I do, everything I put together there ends up tasting the same. I’ll freely admit that’s my own fault. The drinks were pretty weak, too, which was unfortunate. Ah well, at least the company was good.

After dinner we retired back to the Hyatt with Roho, Genet, and Linnaeus and had a lovely swim before bed. On Saturday morning, the five of us had a delicious brunch at Juicy-O then went our separate ways. Dan and I stopped by perro and darkwolph‘s place to drop off some MFF stuff and we wound up talking shop for a bit.

Then it was off to Dan’s mom’s place to try to get her Wii hooked up to wi-fi. I’m not even sure if what we were trying to do can be done: She has a laptop running Vista with built-in wireless as well as a Sprint EVDO card connected via USB. We were trying to create a bridge so the wireless would receive the Wii signal and go out through the EVDO. No joy, though. Instead, she brought her Wii over to our place and we downloaded a bunch of older games for her. She left after a bit and Linnaeus arrived shortly thereafter.

After a bit of chatting we jumped in the car and drove up to Kenosha, where we met the crowd from the previous night (as well as several new faces) for dinner at Charcoal Grill. The phrase that pays is “half-price appetizers and drinks after 8 PM”. Holy cow! So good, and those Long Island iced teas had a kick!

On Sunday…we did nothing. And it was good. OK, actually, we finally showered late in the afternoon and went out to Target at about 7 PM to pick up a few groceries and things for the house.

And here we are back in the middle of the work week. I’m really looking forward to Friday – I just got the OK from my boss to take off early, so Dan and I will be leaving at noon or before for Columbus, OH, where we will abuse the hospitality of fordshepherd and kai_darkwolf. I have only a vague idea of what the plans might be, but I’m sure we’ll be in good hands. I promise to take lots of pictures 🙂