Powered by Timbits, I made it back across the border into the States with little ado.
Minneapolis is a beautiful city. Charlie picked me up at the airport and gave me a bit of a driving tour. We had some buffalo chicken tenders and I crashed pretty early and slept in pretty late the next morning. Had a late breakfast at historic Mickey's Diner and then did some more wandering, including a stop at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden to see (amongst other things) the famous Spoonbridge and Cherry (pictured). Picked up the rental car for the next day's drive (Wil: the customers in front of me were your worst nightmare, and passing high on my list.) Hung out with Charlie and his roommate, had a very tasty dinner of chicken parmesan and pasta, and then headed to The Saloon for drinks. What can I say, if you've been to one gay bar... you've been to one too many. Got home late, then got up early, and headed southeast towards Chi-town.
Weeks ago, someone at work sent out a link to the THIS IS SPARTA! VESTI REMIX! I was in Phoenix at the time and Wil and Thera and I spent days making jokes about where we were dining that evening. Well when planning my drive, I noticed something on the map, and made a slight detour. Although I did not take the time to dine, Sparta, Winconsin, entertained me for minutes on end with its "Bicycling Capital Of America" schtick. Although I am seriously sad I missed the Butterfest by almost exactly a month—I'm sure it makes the dining especially hellish.
Eventually made it to Hose's. We walked up to Tea Essence for a refreshing beverage. He had to work that night, so I went with him downtown and we attempted to catch some of Looptopia (the best part was this guy whose messenger bag was tagged optional). We missed the good stuff, because somewhat before eleven he headed to the office and I headed back to his place to crash.
I woke up to the NYT. A friend had a car for the day and craved adventure, so we trekked to the 'burbs (witnessing a four-alarm fire on the way) for a Superdawg, down Lake Shore, to the house she was sitting in Wrigleyville. Again weeks ago, Hose had sent me a link to 60 Things Worth Shortening Your Life For, so we went from there to Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea to mark number five off the list: a Triple Black Cat espresso. From there to a couple of drinks at Delilah's, which I trust them when they say is one of the best bars in the city. Unfortunately it had been triple-booked with a private birthday party, a rockabilly band, and the Sabres/Senators game, so it was a madhouse. So back to the house, and we watched Impulse, a Bill Shatner tour de force of and . Seriously, it's the best terrible movie I've seen in forever... it's only 82 minutes, take the time if you can find it. And then the first half of Il Mare, which we finished the next morning. Breakfast at Toast Two. Picked up a copy of The Boy Detective Fails at Quimby's and spent a couple of hours reading and drinking iced coffee at Filter (which is closing, which sucks). Eventually back to the house, packed up, and zipped over to Giordano's for pizza on the way to O'Hare, and home.
( all the photos from MN, WI, IL )