Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Adventures in the Heartland

Rob and I are leaving town on Friday for 10 days. I'm told we travel a lot, and though I guess this is true, I always think of "travelers" as people who go to far-flung, exotic places. Like Vietnam, South Africa, Schenectady. Rob and I have been on more of a domestic tour: Denver for me, San Francisco for him, Los Angeles for me, Pittsburgh for him. Which brings me to another point: in addition to traveling a lot, we travel solo a lot.

But here we are, 2 days and counting until our next trip together to the enchanting land that is known to its inhabitants and fans as...The Midwest. I think I'd like to call it The Wild Midwest, just to give it that sense of allure and romance that one normally associates with times past. And by times past, I'm not referring to the night my friends and I had a party at my house, took Ecstasy, and then drove all my little sister's friends home before heading to the beach. Just kidding. We did not go to the beach.

I love where I grew up. That doesn't mean I'm clamoring to move back there anytime soon, but there's just something so refreshing and NORMAL about that place. I guess I have to say that since I was formed there and everything. But I think it's no mistake that many of my best friends to this day are people I met growing up. Anyway, whether or not I'm biased, if you haven't been to Oak Park, Illinois, I recommend a visit. Famous for Frank Lloyd Wright, Ernest Hemingway, Kathy Griffin, and several top Deepish Thought commenters. Stop by my grandpa's house--he'll make you a brandy Manhattan.

Our upcoming trip actually starts in Indiana, at the home of Rob's brother John, where we will barbecue, hot tub, and heckle John's pet swans Frederick and Jewell. We then head to Oak Park for about a day and a half, and then up to Wisconsin to a house my grandparents bought many years ago with one of my uncles. The house is on Lake Archibald...Archibald would be a good name for a kid. Or an eagle...I digress. The lake is the center of all activity. We will either be lying on the pier, me looking at all of my brown relatives and trying to figure out how I ended up with the legs of Casper the Friendly Ghost, or on the pontoon boat with cocktails and cheese crackers--because we are elegant. Or maybe we'll be making s'mores at the bonfire, or making loon calls from a canoe.

All I know is that I could not be more excited about this trip. I will always love exploring new places, but sometimes it's really fun to just go home.


Dan said...

"The house is on Lake Archibald...Archibald would be a good name for a kid. Or an eagle...I digress."

Hysterical. Also, Amanda: We're naming the next one Archibald. Regardless of gender, natch.

Sarah said...

You guys are getting another eagle?

Amanda said...

YAY is right! We can't wait to have you for one and a half days!

Also, one must not forget Oak Parkian Dan Castellaneta. To me, his legacy outshines FLW, Hemingway AND Kathy Griffin combined.

Also, Dan: No worries, I have actually changed Grace's name. She's now responding to Archina.