Travel to the windy city was pretty uneventful. Note to those who haven't traveled American Airlines since they implemented the $15.00 check bag cost - you'd think they'd only take cash at curbside, but actually, they do not - only credit cards - no cash. Threw me off my game. I had a $20 dollar bill - ready to pay to check my bag and tip the dude. But no worries.. of course, they can make change for a $20 to get a $2 tip!
Arrived in Chicago (OakBrook) early Thursday morning. Checked into the Renaissance Hotel that also shares the parking lot with the Oak Brook Center Mall. So, I decided to go look for a place to eat lunch and a nail place before hooking up with Yvette and the wedding party. There were not many healthy food choices (Maggianos, Cheesecake Factory, Sbarro's, Corner Bakery, etc). I ended up at a thai restaurant. I was glad it wasn't very crowded since I was by myself. Of course, the hostess gave me the little hand signal for 1. I thought, "I'm sophisticated and grown up. I can eat by myself. Just look busy. Dang - no new messages on my treo. Where's my pen? I can write very important notes in my very cute notebook." Anyway, ordered some pad thai dish. They didn't bring me chopsticks, and I was too nervous to ask. It just didn't feel right to eat this dish with the big flat noodles with a fork. I just wanted to hurry and get out of there. I needed to find a nail salon that didn't cost $100 for a mani/pedi. So, I leave - say goodbye to the hostesses - again showing that I'm sophisticated and can eat by myself. I am not a loser. Walk around the mall, and yay, found a nail place. I'm in the middle of the pedicure when I started thinking of how much money I've spent so far. I couldn't remember what I had spent for lunch. Maybe it was because in my sophistication and glory, I FORGOT TO GET MY CHECK!!! I DID NOT PAY MY BILL!!! The horror I felt. Here I am in the middle of a pedicure with the manicure still to be done. I asked the nail girl (after I "confessed" what I had done) if they had a listing of shops and restaurants so that I could call. Of course not. I almost hyperventilated when one of the security guys on a segway (see link below for a reference) came into the nail salon. I was sure I was captured on security cameras, and that I was definitely headed to Mall Jail. I just wanted to finish my mani/pedi, I promise I will got back and pay!!! Shew... he wasn't after me. (Yay! I had a vision of an episode of Seinfeld when Jerry got busted for peeing in the parking garage.)
Happy Ending - I made it back to the restaurant (see link below for restaurant name/description). I went to the hostesses and explained the situation. They remembered me. They called the waitress, and she was extremely happy to see me because she was going to have to pay for my lunch. It was $12.00. I felt terrible. The hostesses were saying that she had lost faith in humanity. Again, I felt so bad, but I am glad that I remembered.. because that would have been awful to make a young girl pay for my lunch because I was all insecure about eating by myself.
Blackened Shrimp At Central Market yesterday, I was given a sample plate with steak, shrimp, and a salad. The shrimp ...