Monday, March 31, 2008

Adventure through the streets

Boy, do I have a doozy for you today. (And, I looked up the word "doozy"...that's how you spell it)

So, I have this whole week off, becaue I'm a senior, and we don't have to do standardized testing like everybody else. I decided to use this day to try to finish all of my homework so that it's not hanging over my head. In order to finish my homework, I had to go to the big library downtown to get a whole bunch of books. My parents thought it would be too hard to find parking, so my dad dropped me off and I planned to take the CTA home.

I had never actually used the Harold Washington library. I found the call numbers for all my books and began to ascend the circling rounds of escalators. I went up and up, I realized that I didn't know how to figure out where my books were. Sure, I have call numbers for them, but, in the middle of millions of books, what good are they supposed to be? I mean, come on.

I took a guess at the Social Sciences floor and it worked out. I had to ask the librarian for help finding one book, though. My huge stack that I was carrying around got a little tiring, I have to admit.

I had fun having one of those "Wow. libraries are quite something" moments as I gazed up the tall bookcases. I felt so privileged to live in a place where not only am I surrounded by as many thousands of books I might need, but where the city checks all the escalators to make sure I'm absolutely as safe as I can be. Thanks, America.

Anyways, I finished up finding all my books, getting the ones off of hold, and asking the librarian which of the five exit doors I should use to get to the brown line. Out to Van Buren I went, mounted the stairs to the train. Then, I asked the lady at the window how much I should put on the fare card to take one train then one bus. Thinking back, today must have been the day for asking questions. It's a good thing I'm a girl and don't mind asking questions on my way...

So, I made it onto the train. We rode and rode and right before my stop I realized that my stop...wouldn't be a stop. I had been trying to figure out, "hmm....once I get off at Irving, how will I know which way to take the bus?" I tried to envision the stop in my brain, and I figured that it was the one where you take the stairs down and come out under the underpass. In that case, I would be able to tell visually. Well, that didn't happen. My stop was closed. Then, my brain started up...well, I would just get off at Montrose. Now, let's see, Montrose is north of Irving. If I live west of the train (and I'm just guessing that I do), I will need to go to the left of the direction that the train is heading...hmmm....

I got off at Montrose, but once I got down to the street, it took me a second to figure out which way I had been going. I decided that the Montrose bus seemed a little iffy to me, so I would just walk up to Irving and take that one, which I knew would take me right to my street. As I walked away from the train, I looked back and figured, that direction is I'm walking I'm gonna take a right and turn south and walk right on to Irving.

Um...I walked and walked and ran into Lawrence.

I don't think Lawrence is between Montrose and Irving.

At Lawrence I stopped and decided that I should just ask someone for directions. I wasn't sure what direction I was headed anymore, and that isn't a very good spot to be in. Across the street was a crossing guard...I decided to ask the nice helper in the orange coat. Trouble, trouble, I waited to cross the street, the crossing guard put away his coat and got ready to leave. So, I opted to go into the Chase bank instead.

In I went, and tried to decide on a friendly face to ask. I felt so pitiful, like a runaway or something, going into a bank for refuge. I approached one of the bankers who has a desk and asked him where Irving was. I pointed forward and said, "this is South?" "This is north." "Oho..." He asked if he would like him to print out a map for me...then he asked if I banked with Chase... haha

I went back out and began re-tracing my steps, thinking of how this would be such a good blog and how funny I thought it was that my dad had no idea his daughter was wandering down Wolcott trying to find the Irving bus to get home...

A light rain had started, so I was getting wet listening to Misty Edwards sing about the Days of Noah...I clutched that map and watched it get wetter and wetter.

Well, finally I found my bus, and when the vehicle actually pulled up it said that it was going towards Harlem...I figured that sounded good, so I went. Once on the bus, I switched my iPod to a Beethoven symphony to calm down a bit and settle in. During the [long] ride, I finished a whole piece of homework!

I'm home. I'm safe. And I officially endorse Chase bank and all of its map-printing banking guys who don't have branches in Hawaii. Or else, I might just have opened an account there. Oh well.

But, I did finish my homework!! =)

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