Saturday, July 25, 2009

Friday's Travels

Today started a lot earlier then I thought when I woke up at 3:00am my time and was struggling to go back to sleep. I just could not believe I had slept so well with the hotel being part of the takeoff route for Chicago O’Hara International airport. I was very amazed that I got myself up and rolling a 9am I was fed and ready to attack the day. I enjoyed a nice complementary breakfast at the holiday inn express. After downloading the iphone update before I left the hotel and started wondering towards Midway Airport on the outskirts of Chicago to meet up with David Arken my friend and driving coach that was flying in later tonight.
After checkout however I met a man by the name of Berry who was a cargo pilot who was one of those guys who could through his life story in 15 minutes. But interesting lives involving starting his professional career as an aircraft manufacture building the 747’s for Boeing in Washington. But from there moved up to Alaska and became a pilot and worked his way into the freight industry. Now he is Captain of some of the airplanes he built for Boeing flying the 747’s with freight all over the globe. In the next three days he will have been in 4 country’s all of them being clearly across the globe from there home base in Anchorage Alaska.
Berry was also very interested in me and my racing ambitions and asked me the classic question. He asked me if I was ever scared and for the first time I could tell him yes. I have gotten scared in a racecar just at the last Ohio event with the Jetta TDi cup. I told him about how just by turning left I got my car to go from being happy on 4 wheels to being completely happy on 1 wheel. He was astonishes as I was using my body and words to best explain what was happening to me and just explaining that one turn which in reality only lasted about 15 seconds took about several minutes to explain the whole scenario to him. He was astonished with the fact that a car could get to that point and the only uncomfortable point about that was me seeing grass. He was impressed. He also was asking about our safety equipment and asked to see my defNder neck brace. From there he started talking about how this single device could have saved Dale Ernheartt Seniors life. We both agreed that it was a shame. But by this point we had arrived at his stop on the bus ride back to Chicago O’Hara and we said goodbyes and I left him with a card so he can brag to his niece and nephews that he met a racecar driver. Plus I had to drop the line that “In the future if your company could be interested in sponsoring a racecar hand them my card.”
The bus driver after chatting me up about racing cars and wanted to check out my website as well as he was dropping me off outside the Hilton O’Hara hotel. From there the ABC bus lines had a charter bus running to Midway International Airport that costs me $16. What was amazing after I was on board it turned out that I was the only one on the bus and it made me think. I hope this $16 covers this bus driver’s pay and the bus’s gas. Although the pretty young lady was walking down the sidewalk and ended up boarding my bus. She appeared very coordinated considering how she was managing 5 bags with her two hands wheeling them down the sidewalk with her snowboard bag over her shoulder and made it appear effortless. She hoped on the bus and after talking for a bit I found out she was just getting in from Argentina and Chile. I was rather impressed with how awake she was after a flight like that. Shortly after that the bus driver and she realized that she was on the wrong bus, so much for being awake and aware. But Mike the bus driver and I ended up having a good conversation without her. Especially considering he was telling me all about his life and the enjoyment and anguish he has seen. The commute to this job after getting laid off and beginning driving busses. So for him he has an hour and a half commute every morning and night. He had two kids that sounded like they were what truly mattered to him and was rather sad to listen to how he was struggling but doing the best he can. Mike had an accent that reminded me of something out of a movie and talked about his trip out to California and he was one of the few people I have talked to about California that had made the trip out to Yosemite national park. This for any body that has not really seen mountains at all turns it into a breathtaking adventure. He talked mostly about the road into Yosemite and how amazing that drive was with the wall next to you and the cliff to the other side. Its something you can only see in the western united states and thank god for it.
From there we finally arrived at Midway airport where I preceded to find myself a bathroom, a coke, and a power outlet where I could write all this while I wait for Dave’s plane. About six hours later after two PowerAde’s and a bag of Doritos Dave arrived and we rented our car and headed out to Juliet. During that drive I am still amazed seeing brick buildings which are all but extinct in California. Especially after the lomapreatta earthquake. Plus people in middle America people have some of the most impressive lawns I have ever seen. The largest lawns and front yard ever it’s really amazing and now I finally understand the need for a lawn mowing tractor. After about a 45 minute drive we arrive at what turned out to be the most confused front counter ever. This gentleman struggled for a half an hour to find out he was trying to check me in under the wrong guest. Oh well at least I was happy to see that my package had made it there that had all my driving equipment in it. After settling in the room Dave and I figured that out everything went smoothly and walked to a ____________ for a quick byte to eat. Boy I never though I could get a full thanksgiving dinner for two for less then $20 dollars. I was amazed and on that note wandered back to the hotel with Dave and called it a day after all 5:15am wasn’t to far away.

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