Sunday, May 18, 2008

One of my favorite things about Chicago - The Green City Market

Alex and I were both out of town last week, but I returned first, meaning I had to entertain myself on Saturday morning. I ran a bunch of errands and was lucky enough to find myself with some time to run over to the Green City Market. Like many cities, Chicago has lovely neighborhood farmers' markets throughout the summer, but the Green City Market is the largest and the best, if you can find a parking space (or manage the walk from wherever you live).

This weekend was the first weekend for the Green City Market and the pickings were slim. Next week we'll have more; we sold out of everything at 8am; would you like to buy some plants for your garden?; and try our preserves! were the common refrains.

It was a beautiful day, though, and me and my camera had a grand time.

And I discovered that I'm awesome at parallel parking on the driver's side of the street. My mom must be so proud!
Proof, in case Alex doesn't believe me

This brings to mind one of the things that perplex me: Chicago is the 3rd largest city in the US. Driving in large cities demands parallel parking skills. Chicago is in Illinois. And yet, the Illinois state driving exam does not require that you know how to parallel park and so driving schools in Illinois (at least the ones at public high schools) do not teach parallel parking skills. Why is that???

Other things that perplex me: why the TSA at some airports needs to see your boarding pass after you walk through the metal detector (treating you like a serious threat if you let it go through with your luggage) and, at other airports, the TSA people look at you like you're nuts when you show them your boarding pass - like: who brought little miss show and tell? I don't care where you're going, m'am!

Also, why the Starbucks in my building invested time, money and effort into reorganizing the ordering process using walkie-talkies, a zig-zag amusement-park-esque line setup and at least twice as many employees as before when they forget to make my drink (after I order it from the person who relays it via walkie talkie while I zig and zag, and reorder it at the register) 90% of the time.

And finally, why I still bother going to the Starbucks in my building when I could instead go to Caribou in the building attached to mine, where they never forget to make my drink.

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