7/13 Chicago, IL 4382 Miles

The ride from Cleveland to Chicago was relatively uneventful. Some tollways, some roadsides, we got gas somewhere. Hell, even our time spent in Chicago wasn’t eventful. Normally when in Chicago, we tool around downtown, take in some shopping, check things out, fun stuff like that.
Not this time.
We got into town and stopped at Portillo’s for lunch. If you don’t know Portillo’s, you should. Portillo’s is a staple for us when we visit Chicago, it’s all meat and meat and more meat. Vegetarians have limited options, and vegans really need to just not go inside.
After a lunch that shortened my life by a few days, we headed off to IKEA to kill whatever life might have been remaining in our checking account. I got a new set of pans to replace the ones I got for Christmas 10 years ago, and Jen got herself an umbrella that is the physical manifestation of swank.
Back to Portillo’s for dinner. Being that the past two weeks were about tasting the adventure and doing new things, I figured I would try something new. Usually I get something with their tasty Italian beef, but I was craving ribs so I ordered up a half slab of ribs for carry out. Big fat ugly mistake. My last meal of my trip was a flat grey slab of meat that tasted the way a dog smells. Terrible. Shit.
I rounded out my evening by watching Men in Black and discovering that none of the RoadRunner-provided dialup numbers in the Chicago area worked. No email for me.
The next day I drove quickly and safely home, a route I have taken a million times before. My sister and my in-laws were waiting for us and while I was sad to have such a great vacation end, I was relieved to be back in the familiar comfort of my own home.