Bowled Over

I’ve been out of my own loop lately. Chicago was kind of a blur. We got there in time to check into the hotel and walk over to an oldie but goodie—Wholefoods—for a snack before we had to get ready and go to the wedding. The concierge told us the best way to get to Garfield Conservatory was to take a taxi. The first bad sign was that although the taxi driver assured our bellman that he knew exactly how to get us there, about one minute into the ride he asked us how to get there. Good thing we were prepared.

What we didn’t know was that getting there would be the easy part of our trip. The ceremony went quickly which I’m sure the bridal party was happy about. The groomsmen had to wear these bowler hats and they were sweating bullets as they baked in the early evening sun.

Our friend was college was standing up in this wedding and it was nice to catch up with him during the cocktail hour.

College buds re-connecting. Bill in his groomsman attire. He's smiling because he's out of the sun post-ceremony.

Dinner time rolled around and because the couple are avid runners, each table was a tribute to a race they’d run together. We were at the infamous Boston Marathon table. It’s probably the closest I’ll ever get to that race. It turns out that we were also at the table with the most post-graduate degrees [I didn’t take a survey but I’m guessing because there were 2 MDs, 2 PhDs, one JD and one engineer]. I didn’t mind being at the egghead table. We even got some chocolates to pass around while we waited for dinner.

A box of chocolates for the whole table to nibble on. I had a very rich dark chocolate truffle. It was not disappointing.

Dinner was inside the conservatory so noises bounced off of the walls making it difficult to hear and the air was heavy with humidity. Nevertheless, it was an interesting place to have a wedding party.

Inside the reception "hall:" Lush plants surrounded us while we wined and dined.

I think it affected the first course, as the salad was a tad limp.

Slightly wilted salad wtih greens, oranges and mango.

The groom is a vegetarian so the only entrée options were Morrocan eggplant or veggie lasagna. I had the eggplant. It was as big as a football and had some cous-cous and asparagus. I did what I could with it but most of our eggplant plates at the table looked like they had barely been touched. N had the lasagna which he said was cheesy but alright.

Super dark pic of my hollowed out eggplant with couscous and asparagus.

The highlight for me was the dessert: cupcakes. And not just any cupcake! They were filled with frosting. Be still my beating heart. I got the chocolate with peanut butter and N got the vanilla with cookie dough. They were both delicious. Our friend, Bill, pounded about 5 of them. After one I was in a sugar coma or else I would have gone in for another. They were that good.

Mine and His wedding cupcakes. They were both fantastic and probably the highlight of the night for me. Maybe sad, but definitely true. I'm a known frosting whore in these parts.

As the reception started to wind down, people started going out to the front of the building to get a cab. Here’s where it got dicey. We were told by the security there that they “wouldn’t send [my] family to the L at this time of night” even though it was within view. Maybe 2 blocks away. He told us not to worry. The cab company had promised to send upwards of 20 taxis our way. Two hours and only 3 cabs later, we were left standing with Bill and another couple who were insanely wasted. We had no choice but to head to the L. It was midnight and we had been waiting for close to 2 hours at this point.

We got to the train with about 3 minutes to spare. Lucky for us Bill has an iPhone and could tell when the train was coming. Unlucky for us that every time he said a train was coming prior to this, we said, let’s wait for the cab. While we were waiting for the now late train, a loud group of guys came up on the deck. We didn’t say anything but they got louder and louder. Finally, two guys walked over and checked us out. At this point I’m saying all kinds of prayers in my head. I’ll be honest: I was scared. They ended up saying something like we were “acting like” we were “better than” them. I wasn’t acting like anything. I was tired and cranky and just wanted to get home. I wanted to say, “Can’t we just all get along?” I kept my mouth shut. The guys continued to talk about us and then decided to throw a water bottle in our general direction. Finally they skulked back to the other end of the tracks and the train came. It ended up fine but is not an experience I care to have again.

The next day I had to cleanse my palate so I went shopping at the Water Tower Place but really just spent my time at Macy’s. I loaded up on clearance bras and underwear and found a couple of work shirts. I met up with N, Bill and the newly married couple at the Museum of Contemporary Art afterward. I love this museum so we spent a couple of hours there before heading back to the hotel to work out and soak in the ginormic tub in our room.

The Park Hyatt bathroom in all its glory (the tub is ridonculous and has a view of the city).

Although we had great intentions to eat at some spectacular restaurant for dinner, we were both exhausted. Plus, the places we wanted to eat were either closed on Sundays or had no reservations and after the fiasco the night before, the idea of waiting for anything seemed totally unappealing.  So we headed over for a diy dinner at Wholefoods. We ate dinner and had some Dragon’s Milk stout (my new fave) while watching the sun set from our hotel room. That might sound depressing or lame to some people but I don’t care. It was actually delicious and quite relaxing.

Our room with a view.

We headed back home Monday morning. Little did I know that I was coming home to a work storm. It was an ugly week. I’ll leave it at that.

Is anyone else in love with frosting centered cupcakes or is it just me?  

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