I was initially worried that I would be stuck here at Hanover for the 4th of July, because everyone else living at Young House was leaving for the week. The 6th of July was my birthday, and I figured I’d end up alone for that, too. This is what happens when you don’t currently have car insurance and can’t go anywhere (including home).
But this is what happens when you have awesome friends. My friend, Matt, invited me to go to his house for the week of the 4th, and surprised me with a trip up to Chicago on my birthday to see my friends and family up there. I was saved from a week of doing nothing, just in the nick of time.
My week long adventure started with a show in Princeton, Ind., where a teacher I had in high school came to see me perform. He is moving to El Salvador to teach soon, and wanted to see me before he had to leave. My next stop was Matt’s house, where I stayed for a few days. We went to his aunt’s house to light fireworks, and other than nearly getting blown up one or two times, it was great.
Then came Friday: our trip from West Terre Haute, Ind., to Chicago. We made a stop outside of Indianapolis to pick up our friend, Jesse, who would join our adventure, and continued on our way. Once in Chicago, Jesse and I hopped out of the car to pick up my girlfriend from the train station while he worked a miracle and found parking in the city for two days.
Our hotel was right across from Grant Park, which put us in a prime spot to walk around downtown and see all the sights. We went down Michigan Avenue a few times, walked the Riverwalk, went to Navy Pier and explored the city for two fun days before we had to leave.
If Matt and I hadn’t had work the next day we might have stayed longer.
The trip back to Hanover was an ordeal itself. It should take five, maybe five and a half, hours. It took fifteen. It wasn’t all driving, of course; we stopped at countless places on our way back to see my friends and family. We even stopped at the Indiana Dunes for a while, and I showed Matt and Jesse around my hometown, which surrounds the park.
When Matt and I finally got back to Hanover at 3 a.m., the campus was dark and silent. Perfect for falling asleep after an exciting birthday weekend and an exhausting trek back home.