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... policy and the idiots that follow it.
Interestingly when we finally arrived in Chicago, having dropped off the car at the rental centre, got a bus to the city and located our hostel we were told by the hostel staff the Chicago toll collection doesn't even go to the city - but to an East Asian investment group.
At least we had finally arrived and despite being in 10 and 8 bed dorms we were happy to be making this our final destination.
... I walked out towards where Annalissa would soon be finishing work, so we could meet her on the way to a restaurant we'd booked for the three of us. I had some kind of grilled chicken and fruit house salad which was delicious, and for once, as it was 50% leaves, I could finish what was on my plate! Sam was a bit down in the dumps because of an exam she needs to resit in order to become a teacher in Florida, which is her plan for September.
Thursday morning I set out walking ...
... and screened but you don't have to take off your shoes or jackets, get your liquids out of your bag etc. I went through first but was so super stressed that I couldn't answer the security officers question; he had only asked a general 'how did you like Texas?' question, but after I hesitated to answer & probably looked like a deer in a head light, he asked further questions about where I've been and where I'm going - time wasting basically, which meant even more stress ...
... plane, writing, trying to recall everything) was the food at the airport and this random guy who decided to delight us all with his amazing piano playing right by my gate; I've attached the video to this blog. It was so nice listening to him, made me feel at home since I play piano, although probably at a fifth of his caliber haha. Nonetheless, made me happy. If there's one thing I've learned so far, it's that with this kind of trip you really have to be ...
After having checked out early and spending most of my day at Washington Union Station, I finally board my train to Chicago Union Station in the late afternoon. 17 hours on a seat in Economy Class, I did not know what I signed up for.
I reach my assigned seat, trade for the window with the woman next to me and am soon left alone all together as she leaves with her young baby and family to another car.