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Back from Shuffling

We're back from a long weekend in Chicago, a trip that this time felt more like a visit to the north pole. We left home Friday in nearly 60 degree temperatures and arrived in the big city at about 20 degrees cooler. And if that doesn't seem all that cold for you, imagine my dismay at getting up Sunday morning to a snow covered landscape and snow filled air, only an hour before we hit the slushy streets. The impetus for this trip was my inclination to run the 8K Shamrock Shuffle my brother and his friend, a decision I lamented only slightly as we stood shivering, waiting for the race to begin, but an accomplishment with which I am pleased, especially after finishing with a pace better than a 10 minute mile even with running in inches of slush and crossing the finish line soaked all the way up to the knees. I can't say I'd like to race in those conditions again, but race again I will; the Dex-Ann run is only two months away, though I doubt they hand out beers just past the finish line.

Of course there was more to the trip than just my running. We had a wonderful visit with my brother and his friend, and enjoyed such frivolities as Chicago deep dish pizza, a night at a jazz club, braving the cold for shopping on Michigan Ave, and an afternoon at the Museum of Science and Industry. I will say that traveling has become a bit more arduous as Calvin matures. He is still the fantastic traveler he always was – he sleeps just as well in a tiny walk-in closet as he does in his own room at home, and he didn't even blink at the time change or the massive obliteration of his daily schedule – but because he is so much more busy and interactive now than ever before, it is harder to settle into more confined spaces, like the car or the apartment, without the general peace suffering some injury. At home, where he has his own play room or bedroom, the constant singing and word play are great fun, and the time he spends playing alone are enough to recharge your energy for the next sequence of "why, why, why" (did we mention he has entered the why phase?), but in more confined quarters it is hard to get the reprieve needed to bolster your patience for the next onslaught. He was incredibly cooperative and happy the whole trip, he's just more tiring than he used to be and we/I owe a great thank you to my mom, who stayed behind to watch him on several occasions, allowing us to go to a jazz club Friday night, attend the runners' expo Saturday afternoon, and let Jon and dad come down to snap pictures and take care of our warm coats during the race.

The final day of our trip was a special gift, since Curtis realized only that morning (after walking all the way to work, of course) that he had the day off and could spend it with us, and we spent it all together enjoying the Museum of Science and Industry. Destinations like that become increasingly enjoyable as Calvin ages, and the talkative nature that makes him so tiring at other times made him quite fascinating during the museum trip. He especially loved any and every exhibit that had anything to do with a train, and, of course, the banana split we had for lunch (don't tell!) at the old fashioned ice cream parlor. It was the cherry on top of our weekend vacation. So now we are home.  There are, of course, a great many more pictures.  If you want to see them visit the March 2009 gallery.  Happy spring!

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Reader Comments (1)

Sounds like a fun trip, and congrats on your wonderful finish!
April 7, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBecky

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