Sunday, May 21, 2006

A Lake Delton evening

I have a kitty-cat rubbing her head on my toes, and purring.

In case you're wondering, this is a good thing.

It is still, and peaceful, and quiet. You can hear the wind in the trees...and not a lot else. Even the wind seems to whisper, "All is quiet..."

In case you're wondering, this is a wonderful thing.

Especially for a boy on the south side of Chicago, where communter trains and freight trains and highway traffic noise is a part of life at any hour of the day or night. It ain't heaven, but it's close.

I met up at noon with my good friends (and bloggers-on-hiatus) Tom and Michael, who have been my friends and confindants ever since I came to Hyde Park nearly 3 years ago. Tom retired back in December, and has built his retirement home on his ancestral farm in the Wisconsin Dells. After two months of trips back & forth, today was their final load-out - a large-ish dresser, a large and cumbersome sofa, and a couple hundred bits of "stuff that didn't fit in other boxes." So I helped them clean-out the last of their stuff (remembering the 80/20 rule: eighty percent of the stuff takes 80% of the time, and the last twenty percent...also takes 80% of the time).

But they got started only an hour later than they planned (by comparison, we just won't talk how late I was during my last move...), and we had a delightful drive up to the Dells. Tom led the way in his red GMC Canyon truck, with Michael driving the blue-n-white Budget rent-a-truck, and me in the rear with the elderly Camry filled with boxes.

The drive is about 190 miles. The first 24 miles (from Hyde Park to the O'Hare toll plaza) took an hour and a quarter. (It's drives like that which make me ready to pack my stuff and go anywhere away from a big city.) But the rest of the drive was a delight. Total elapsed time - 4 hours 30 minutes...not too bad, especially with the iPod to supply the movin-right-along music. I debated whether the lead-off song should be "The Great Adventure" or "Up, Up & Away," but in the end the 5th Dimension won out...

Once we got here, Tom treated us to dinner at a delightful little Italian restaurant called "R Place." We had delightful meals - my salmon was wonderful - and great fellowship. We then drove back to the house, and unloaded the truck into the garage (it took about an hour and a half to load it, and about 15 minutes to unload it, it seemed!). Then Tom regaled me with scenes from "RFD TV" - more country music and agricultural reporting than any city boy would ever need - and generally wound down the day.

Sunday will be a busy day - I will leave the Dells about 7:00, head down to a funraiser brunch for the Center on Halstead, which The Employer is proud to support. Then meet up with a sponsee for coffee, a meeting, and then out to to Oak Brook (a Chicago suburb) for a concert including Ken Medema. All in all, it should be the incredible wrap up to a great weekend.

It turns out that (just as a "what the heck" moment) I checked Ken Medema's schedule, and he was doing not one, but two performances in Chicago this weekend. He's doing a concert tonight, and worship tomorrow, at a Baptist church on the north side of Chicago. And then Sunday night he's doing a concert at a church in Oak Brook. I can hardly wait...if you haven't heard of Ken Medema, you'll be amazed if you ever get to see him.

So here I am, reflecting on a full and wonderful day. My kitty-cat friend (not sure whether this is Cassidy or Sundance) is now sitting next to the PC monitor, purring away and occasionally kneading the mouse and the keyboard (which has led to some interesting typos...). So I think it's time to head off to beddy-bye-land. Five thirty is gonna come really early...

1 comment:

geek_boi said...

Steve,

Be sure to let us know how Sunday went!