I don’t think I have the energy to go into as much depth as I did with the last update.
Here are some things we did after New Orleans, and after we found the French Food Festival:
We visited Grand Isle, LA. An island located in the gulf off the coast of LA. Pretty much in the middle of nowhere. The accommodations were not five star, but the birding was!
Then we drove like, 9 hours (ugh) and ended up in Memphis to visit friends! (yay!) We had a super fun time. We got to see the city, we had some serious quality time with our friends and their baby, and I got to see one of my oldest friends as a dad. How weird/cool is that? It’s pretty cool. When our plans for later in the trip got a little skewed, we were all more than happy to get an extra day together. And it was perfect timing since it was Memphis Beer Week!
Our next stop was St. Louis. Just an overnight, so we didn’t have to drive from Memphis all the way to Madison. We managed to squeeze in some good eats and treated ourselves to the smothered fries at the Shaved Duck. Seriously decadent. We also had the chance to see the arch. It’s huge! Pretty cool piece of architecture. We did not go to the top because we needed to hit the road, but we got some sweet pics at least!
After St. Louis, we headed to Madison, WI. What a cool little city. If I could live in any place we have visited so far, it would be Madison. (I would need covered parking though. I hear winter’s a beast.) We met up with a friend who clued us in on a great little brewery (conveniently on Birds and Beer night) where we enjoyed beer and cheese. Lot’s of cheese. In the form of curds, sauce, soup, dumplings. You name it, we ate it made out of cheese. If you’re only in WI for one night, you gotta do it right, am I right? Lucky for us, we were there for the farmers market they have every Saturday right outside the Capitol Building. It was an awesome scene. I would love it if something like that existed where I lived. Hmm, maybe I’ll just move there. Seriously though, the perfect combo for us: lots of cheese and beer for me, and there are a shit ton of birders there for Bill! Like so many. I heard bird trash talk in the bar. The debate was East Coast Birding over West Coast Birding. For real. I thought, “now I have seen it all.”
And now we are in Chicago! Finally! We are trying to take in as much art and food as we possibly can in three days. We will throw a Cubs game and some shopping in there, and then we are on our way again! I’ll try to update more about Chicago while we’re here. It’s a pretty cool city and I’m excited to see more.
I seriously can’t believe we have only one week left! I shouldn’t complain, I really shouldn’t, but I don’t want it to end!!
Aside from my wedding day, I don’t think I have ever been more sure that this very moment is exactly what it’s supposed to be. I have never been more sure that my place on this earth, on this map, in this city, in space and in time is exactly what it is supposed to be. No questions. This is right. And tomorrow? That will be right too. Because we took the time to go out and see and do and find what makes us happy. We took a chance on the open road to celebrate us. And when we get home and back to our everyday and our expected routine and work, we will know we had this. And we will be happy. Because we are. And if in my whole life, I never accomplished another thing past this point (which, of course, I will) I will know I had this. With this man. With this friend. With this partner. That at least for this small amount of time, we made our life exactly what we wanted it to be. And when days are hard and not exactly what we want them to be, we will look back and remember. We will remember that we did this. And we will remind ourselves that we can do it again. And we will also know that we had this all along.