23 July 2003

Visit to the States

Nancy and Theresa and I just got back from our annual visit to family in Michigan and Illinois. We had a great time. I will not bore readers with every little thing we did. But there were a few highlights worth mentioning:

- A personal tour of my uncle's collection of antique tractors at his farm near Dundee, Michigan.

- A visit to the recently refurbished Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. My favourite exhibits here were the Great Train Story and the Pioneer Zephyr. (I am a railfan, after all.) Theresa liked Colleen Moore's Fairy Castle and the Idea Factory.

- A visit to the Fox River Trolley Museum, where they've extended their trackage south to the Blackhawk Forest Preserve. Afterwards we stopped for Tastee Freez ice cream, something I remember fondly from my childhood.

- A big fat Greek dinner at my aunt and uncle's house, including two kinds of souvlakia, string beans and kolokithia (zuchini), kidney bean salad, tsatsiki, and what is arguably the world's greatest beer, Pilsner Urquell, brewed in the Czech Republic. The highlight of the evening had us all dancing to nostalgic Greek songs I had last listened to some 30 or 35 years ago. (Theresa loved this part. "I'm having a wonderful time," she beamed to her great aunt in the middle of a two-step.)

- Several violent storms passing through the area, making for heavy downpours, high standing water, downed tree branches, but cooler than normal temperatures.

- Patio seating at a restaurant, which we enjoyed due to the mild temperature.

- Arriving back home again after ten days on the road.

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