Monday, May 09, 2011

Best Second Annual Chicago Birthday, pt. 1

Hello, this is me, Brigham.  And I'm going to tell you about my Chicago Birthday Adventure.

Jeff and I caught a flight out of Newark to Chicago on Thursday the 28th.  If you were in New York that day you might remember the mighty rainstorms we had.  Said rainstorms delayed our flight 5 hours.  But it could have been worse, if we had been flying out of Laguardia we wouldn't have left until three in the morning.  Three in the morning!

Once the plane finally took off we made it to Chicago no problem.

Where we were greeted by certain familiar faces who had driven to my hometown.

How bout this one?  Recognize him?  Kind of mysterious the way he wouldn't face the camera, right?

I arrived at Chicago with a burrito-sized hole in my stomach, fortunately I know a little spot down the road from Midway.

Hello, old friend.  Hard to believe I've been eating El Gallo de Oro burritos off and on for, uhh, 18 years now?  Place hasn't changed a bit!  (Except it has.)  Back in '93 one of these would have cost you $3.50, now they're $6.

It was a late, late night for us.  And a very early morning for Jeff and I as we were up before 5 to watch the Royal Wedding with Mom and Grandma.  What a wedding!  But I think you heard about it.

After post-wedding naps I took my amigos on a driving tour of Oak Park and neighboring River Forest.  I did not take that many pictures of this because I was giving the tour, not taking it, but here's the back of my high school.  Go Huskies.

And here's these houses in River Forest that I like because they are twins.  Mirror image twins.  Like Tomax and Xamot. 

And then Collin and I took Jeff and Jeff to a very special little place called Johnnie's.

In line I taught the my best about the establishment's rather particular ordering style.  All the preparation in the world can't calm first time Johnnie's orderer jitters, but everything worked out.

After that delicious lunch we took the L downtown.

And wound up a the Cloud Gate.

Wandered through Millennium Park a bit more.

Down past the Art Institute . . . just think how much better this picture would look if I had included the lion's head.

Walked where perhaps we should not have walked.

Look, there's me, making a rare appearance.

Can you tell that someone climbed into the fountain?

There were so many Segway tours going on.  We had run ins with at least three groups, this group was the most embarrassing.

Headed for Grant Park, saw them Indians.

Buckingham Fountain!

The other side of Buckingham Fountain!

After a visit to the public restroom we sat at the shore of Lake Michigan, told tales, made phone calls, and Collin joked about jumping down on the goose that was looking at us the whole time.

Jeff fell asleep.

We decided to wait for him to wake up from a distance to see if he'd sit up in surprise to find himself all alone and fall into the lake.  He didn't/

Heading uptown, a second pass through Millennium Park.

Do you realize I hadn't seen Collin in a year?  I wasn't worried that he'd have changed, though.  I knew he'd still love sticks. 

There are all these apartment buildings in Chicago now that I just didn't know about.

Boat tour, no tornado.

Made it over to Michigan Avenue.

At this point the pictures from the afternoon end, but we spent some time at the Tribune Building, the Garmin store (of all places) and Nike Town (again, of all places) before meeting up with dad for a ride to dinner.

And where was dinner?  Las Fuentes, of course!

You know how I feel about these nachos.  It's no secret.  I love them, my family loves them, we all love them.

Something you might not realize is that my Grandma Taylor was also in Chicago during my birthday weekend.  I told you it was a great weekend!

And at dinner we were joined by an additional reveler, Sarah, recently moved from Salt Lake to Buffalo Grove just in time for Party Weekend.

Tuestay is one of the best days to go to Las Fuentes.

At home Jeff and I opened our birthday presents from Collin.  Yes, these would be paintings of Admiral Ackbar and Jabba the Hutt (holding a heart-shaped pillow).

Everyone loved them and thought they were so funny, even Collin, and he painted them!  I just wish I had a picture or video of my mom laughing at the paintings.  She nearly died!  (Err . . . in the good way . . . of nearly dying)

That night we stayed up real late watching YouTube videos.  That's what friends do when the reunite now, I guess.  Show each other funny things from the internet.


Sara said...

Haha! Collin told me about the paintings -- I'm glad I got to see them! :)

Also, I will probably be in Chicago sometime in the fall and would love a list of good restaurants to eat at. Or places I must visit. I will send you a message when my trip gets closer . . .

Side of Jeffrey said...

I knew I was going to miss an amazing weekend when I moved to Florida, but I didn't know how amazing it would be until I read it here.

Bek said...

this made my heart hurt a little. i wanted to be there with you guys. bad.