The first stop on our almost month-long Tour de USA was none other than our second home, East Lansing, a whopping 1-hour drive from the Mazur residence. To entertain ourselves, we paired our friends’ personalities with Friends cast personas (surprisingly similar, minus Monica). After arriving and reminiscing around campus (and not so much in the Human Ecology building…) we enjoyed a scrumptious free meal of pizza and festive Oktoberfest beer at our nostalgic trivia spot, Old Chicago.
Post food-coma, we gallivanted to Lou Ha’s, CATA style, to meet up with a few of our favorites, Ganci, Sinny, Mase and Paul H. Upon deciding that we needed to be in tip-top shape for tailgating the next morning, we promptly ordered a pitcher of strawberry daiquiris as the boys purchased the necessities for a night of drinking games. After realizing that Christine is the best liar and Ganci is the worst dealer, we met up with the lovely Andrea R. and moseyed (how weird does that word look?) over to the always-interesting Richard’s. After a hazy amount of shots, wicked dance parties and seeing pals Nick, Josh, Shelly and Jenni, we (finally) called it a night without learning how to the Dougie.
After being awoken by Lindsey’s rough 6:00am wake-up call, and a few extra hours of sleep, we headed to the tennis courts for some school-spirited tailgating and caught up with our favorite Columbus transplant, Paul N. while munching on some expertly crafted veggie burgers (thanks, Lindsey & Dave!) and failing to shot gun.
In our home opener the Spartans pulled out a 38 – 14 victory over the WMU Broncos (go green!). Jess met up with Lisa and, thankfully, the ladies convinced Sinny that his clepto tendencies would not suffice, and that bringing a Route 26 CATA sign onto the bus might not be the best plan.
Post-nap, the group reunited for a disappointingly un-tearful and unemotional goodbye (we miss you all already!). Jess presented Paul N. with his very own mini palm tree (cue Tawas memories) that lights up and plays music for his apartment in Columbus (note to self: batteries for reunion in November since he will OBVIOUSLY be playing it all the time). Five steps out the door, Christine proceeded to leave all stomach contents in East Lansing … and two McDonald’s stops along the way.
After some rough construction through Chicago, we reached the Stevens’ Bed & Breakfast and hit the hay. Rise and shine at 9 a.m. Thankfully, Chef Kate is a wonderful cook and whipped us up some breakfast. We got ready for the day and headed to McGoniguls (which should be McGonagall’s, hello Platform 9 ¾ ) for lunch, which was full of chatter about Harry Potter (all encouraged by Christine of course…). Then we set off for Minneapolis!
This portion of the journey has been filled with the …um… unique aroma of Wisconsin. We also witnessed first-hand the justice system at work as the poster grandma for the law against texting and driving was pulled over right before our eyes (thank you, officer, for taking our obnoxious waving and pointing cues). Thankfully, she did not manage to hit our vehicle (although it got MUCH too close for our taste near the end). Falling for a sign promising a scenic outlook, we took a pit stop; after a short hike up a hill we came to the conclusion that the wooded path was more eventful than the outlook itself. For the first time, queasy Christine was able to take the wheel. Wanting to avoid another disappointment, we gathered enough will power to avoid stopping at the “adult store and bakery” (does anyone know what that even means?). Before we knew it we hit the first of the twin cities, St. Paul, and unknowingly crossed the Mississippi River to see Rob in Minneapolis.