Thursday, August 14, 2008

Trail of Tears

In 1832 the U.S. Government tried to remove the Seminole Indians from the Florida Territory as they had done to the Choctaw Indians the year before in the infamous 'Trail of Tears' march west.

My plan to use only public transportation while in Chicago did mostly work. That is, it worked when I planned everything out. When it didn't work, was when Mark decided to do something on the spur of the moment. Now, there is nothing wrong with being spontaneous, but if you don't know where you are going or you don't know how to get there, it can be a problem. It usually starts with Mark saying something like, "I want to go to that cute little store I saw on State Street.". The problem is that he didn't see it on State Street, and I know it isn't on State Street. It is in the opposite direction, yet he insists that we must walk just those two blocks so he can shop at the non-existent store.

Many times I have explained to Mark that I have fragile feet. If he doesn't help me conserve my feet, when he really wants me to walk somewhere important, they will be worn out. On Sunday, we walked a mile to breakfast and back. Then we went to the Lincoln Park Zoo, by bus, and walked around there. So far I was fine, but I knew my limit was not far off. From Lincoln Park we walked to Armitage and Halsted, where we had an early dinner. It was after dinner that I decided we needed wine and snacks for my sisters, who were visiting us at our hotel later. I was happy with Seven-Eleven snacks and wine, after all I was standing right in front of the store. But no, not Mr. Gourmet. No, Mark needed to go upscale and he knew just where to go. We would go to the most pretentious grocery store chain in America, Whole Foods. "It was just around the corner."

Except that it wasn't just around the corner, and after a while pain started to fill my shoes. It didn't matter, the death march plodded on and on, with Mark promising, "It's just in the next block.". After a mile of walking it became obvious that Mark didn't know exactly where it was, and I quickly descended into a hateful wrath. I started berating Mark for not letting me get Seven-Eleven wine, for not letting me get a couple of bags of Cheetos and taking a cab back to the hotel. It was somewhere between Halsted and a blur in the distance, which Mark insisted was the store, that I realized what was happening. Mark's grandmother was a Seminole Indian, and she was obviously channeling though Mark. I was being punished for the sins of our European ancestors, and the trail of tears.


  1. there are at least 6 whole foods in chicago...and you couldn't find any of them?

    kidding. but there are.

  2. Hey! I'd like to buy "COMFORT" FOR $7.99 a pound! Best price ever!!

  3. Your vacation sounds more like a walk-a-thon. You guys should have rented bicycles.

  4. You want a blind guy riding a bicycle in Chicago's traffic? I had a very tragic thing happen Wednesday because of my blindness. I'm not sure when or if I will write about it.

  5. You entered a lady's rest room?

  6. Dave@ No, I'd write about that in a minute. This was a seriously sad incident where death was involved and my blindness was a link in the chain of events.