Since Jen had Monday off, we headed up to Milwaukee to get a short little vacation, pretty much the only time off that we’ll both have. Jen picked me up after class on Saturday and we headed northward. The trip went well until we got near downtown and the expressway just ended. After a futile attempt to find the hotel and being transferred to the wrong number from information, we managed to find our way to the lovely Ambassador Hotel. The design was art-deco and the room provided a personal DVD player and internet access. There was also an excellent coffee shop (Caffe Deco) in the hotel that served Alterra coffee, which was fantastic. There was a surprising number of different coffee places, and I only remember seeing a single Starbucks.
After checking out the room we asked the desk person for a dining recommendation. She mentioned a place that was ‘two blocks away’. Apparently two blocks is more like 10-12. After walking around the area for a good hour, we grabbed the car and made our way downtown. Since 90% of the city is under construction, it took awhile to find parking. We stumbled into some sort of Octoberfest (beer, fire-eaters, and accordians!!) and finally found a mediocre Thai restaurant.
We spent the majority of the next day downtown (after spending 45 minutes trying to go the three miles to the art museum, again the expressway ended, but this time going in the opposite direction). The weather was fantastic and I took a metric crapload of photos of the museum. We got another dining recommendation (two blocks again? more like seven) and after stuffing down some fantastic pretzels, we headed back to the car. The fun part of the day was attempting to get out of the parking garage. Due to construction, two of the three exits from the parking garage were closed and there was only one gate open to take money. It took about 30 minutes just to get out of the garage. Jen was pretty wiped out after hauling her gimp foot around all day so she crashed for a couple of hours while I got caught up with some work online. We headed out to the local casino for and hour or so, but the choking cigarettes sent us home with few winnings.
For dinner we just grabbed some sandwiches from a small place near Marquette and hung out in the room and watched a couple of episodes of Battlestar Galactica.
The next day started off with more Altera coffee and a trip to the Mitchell Park Domes before heading back toward Chicago. We made a quick stop at the Mars Cheese Castle to grab some gifts of cheese and summer sausage. The rest of the trip home was trouble-free. It was good to get away for a couple of weeks. With school going on, it’s not likely that we’ll have much in the way of vacation time for the next couple of years. Hopefully we’ll get a few more weekend trips like this in.