I flew into Milwaukee for the first time. It's a very nice airport, maybe a little bigger than San Diego. (It has a lot more prop traffic.) But it felt like parking your car a block down the street and sneaking in the back door, instead of just pulling into the garage. The feeling of "coming home" that accompanies descent into O'Hare just isn't there. On the drive home from MKE, we passed the outlet mall on WI-50 and I-94. Or what used to be the outlet mall... they're demolishing it now. I remember when that opened, what a huge deal it was. And I remember walking through there once a couple of years ago, seeing how much of it was empty, thinking that Gurnee Mills had probabl killed it, it just didn't know it was dead yet. And now it does.
Northbrook Court has now become obscenely upscale. There is but one card shop left, and it's a Papyrus. The Apple Store is about the same size as the one in Fashion Valley or UTC back in San Diego. The Lenscrafters has expanded again, as has the Gap. They put the Macy's (*spit*) signs up outside Marshall Field's, but the mall hasn't changed the guide signs in the parking lot.
We're taking a new family picture tomorrow. The plan is for all the guys to wear jeans. I haven't worn jeans in ten years now, and what I had then really wasn't fitting anymore. (And it certainly wouldn't now, if I still had them!) I've got some options, we'll make do with what I brought. No dogs this time. The last photo had Swoosh, mom's first Cairn terrier, in it. Now it's just too much headache to wrangle all the dogs, and there's no way they'll sit still, so this will be a dog-free picture.
My grandmother is doing really well these days. She keeps her oxygen bottles in an old box that used to hold a case of champagne. There's no end to how funny that is.
People in Deerfield honk their horns too damned much. Admittedly, I'm sitting in a full parking lot to kill time. But still, I want to start shooting people, to get a little peace. Traffic noise I can handle, these horns... okay, if I wanted peace, I should've stayed in the gym at North. The basketball teams pratciced early in the day. The only people in the building was one of the swim teams and a couple of kids in the weight room. The HVAC is shut off. It was absolutely silent in that gym. It's been a long, long time since I've been there when it was that quiet.
Christmas card shopping sucked this year. I did okay for the folks and grandmother, but everything suitable for my sisters was a-lame. Took me most of the day to find something for them.