JoshuasTravels — visiting the 22nd-largest city in the US (and largest in Wisconsin)

visiting the 22nd-largest city in the US (and largest in Wisconsin)

Written by . Posted at 9:42 pm on February 8th, 2007

I do my fair share of travelling, and I pay a high price for it. Throughout all my journeying, I’ve gotten incredibly lucky. Contrariwise, however, sometimes things have turned sour pretty quickly.

Someday, remind me to tell you about the time I got stranded in Kansas City. It is, in the truest sense of the word, a Comedy of Errors with a very, very fitting and tragic ending. But I won’t tell that story now, so remind me later, and – if you can spare it – buy me a bottle of suds for my trouble.

This trip was supposed to be a little bit of Milwaukee and a lot of Chicago, but it turned out to be a lot of Milwaukee and basically none of Chicago. I meant to hit the Windy City two weekends ago, but the weather kept ruining my plans. I drive a big truck that doesn’t do too hot in the snow, and that’s a problem that’s just exacerbated by Midwest drivers (most of whom go loco-insaneo in snowy conditions). Factor in the break-down variable and waiting for a spare-parts in the cold winter and, well, waiting for warm weather is usually the smart choice.

But I was sick of waiting, and swore that I was making it to Chicago. That weekend. If I had to crawl. And that wasn’t a good idea.

So we (me and my pal Kara) leave Kirksville on a beautiful Friday afternoon. And every thing’s going great and we’re making real good time, all the way to Dubuque, Iowa. About 50 miles outside of Dubuque, the snow starts falling. And then it’s at a half foot and still coming. Like I say, I drive a truck, and that’s a bit tricky in the heavy snow. But – between slowing down the ‘old odometer and paying super-more-attention-to-the-road, things were still fine.

And, as we left Dubuque, it all went out the window. The driving conditions and the trips whole cost/benefit ratio, all of it. It all went out the window, exactly as we crossed the Rubicon. It was too late to go back, and I drove just shy of 200 miles in 3rd gear.

Things weren’t much better when we got to Milwaukee, either. I’m happy to report that M-waukee is a pretty cool little town, and that it’s got three or four great little micro-breweries. I don’t like to play favorites with my beers, but if the the Pilsner at the Rock Bottom wasn’t the best Pilsner I’ve ever had, it’s certainly in the top three.

I’m going through a pretty hellacious set of mid-terms right now, so that’s about all I’ve got time for, but I’d like to note that this trip stands doubley out as the first time I’ve stayed with a friend of a friend. I’ve stayed with friends before and I’ve stayed with strangers before, but never a friend of friend. Until now, I mean.

There weren’t enough (good) pics to justify an album, so I just attached them. And I hope you like them.


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  1. Kara Fillman

    Dude. That was one hellacious trip. But we definitely got some good memories out of it :)

  2. well said, Little Kay

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