Day 8 – Springfield to Chicago

Thursday August 12, 2010

Another full day; we are hot and tired so I’ll let the pictures do the talking today. We planned to drive the whole way on the old Route 66 but plans changed because we spent so much fun time with Barbara May Steiling, my mom’s cousin.

We’ve seen so much corn on our trip! I’ve tried to get a picture or two that can give some idea of the vastness. This is the closest we’ve come. This was taken just off Route 66 at a gas station.

There are hundreds of little places with neon signs; this is typical. We were stopped briefly at a stop light and had traffic behind us so I didn’t have time to frame it well.

After about 45 minutes we got to Atlanta where my grandpa’s family had a farm nearby

Atlanta also boasts a giant, this one holding a hot dog; another treasure to keep your eyes peeled for if you are traveling the Mother Road

Here is a picture of downtown. Just in front of the cafe is little museum. We went in to look around. We told the people there I am related to the Bakers, Masons and Steilings; she knows some people of all those names. Upstairs we found a small card catalog with funeral notices from over the years. I was pretty close to tears when I saw the notice for Hazle Howard Baker – my grandpa. It mentioned my mom as one of the survivors. Very touching

About 15 miles away from Atlanta is Heyworth where my mom’s cousin Barbara May Steiling lives. She lives in a house she moved into with her parents in the early 1950’s when she was in high school. The woodwork in the house is magnificent. 
We had a lovely picnic lunch of cold cuts, fruit, ice tea and fresh tomatoes from the garden. Yum!
This is Barbara with her dog Dolly Annabel Burkhardt Steiling. Her cat Midnight declined the offer to be photographed.
Then we hit the road for the 3 hour drive to Chicago. I take back whatever I said about midwest drivers yesterday. Chicago drivers are nuts. When it comes time to make a lane change, they just turn into your lane no matter what. Driving up Lake Shore Drive was nerve-racking to say the least. If I could have I would have just stopped the car and start sobbing. But it wasn’t an option, and Andrew had given us good directions.
We got there just as the pizza was delivered. Susan Barbero from work had recommended Lou Malnati’s Chicago style deep dish pizza. It was delish.
And of course a picture of Andrew and Henriët
After pizza we went for a 20 minute walk north on Broadway until we got to the corner where we could see the Wrigley Field lights.
Upon our return Henriët and Andrew presented us with a surprise for desert: a special chocolate mint crisp. And I do mean special; it was made with mint chocolate from South Africa and a caramel/condensed milk filling, again from South Africa. It was so sweet of Henriët to use up these valuable homeland treats for our pleasure.
After all that we are sitting and relaxing in Andrew’s apartment; your author is hard at work on this very blog entry while Carla and Henriët relax. Shortly after, Andrew took Henriët home and we’ll reconnoiter in the morning at Orange, a breakfast place that makes killer French Toast. 

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