As we were checking out of our hotel yesterday morning, we hit a snag in saying goodbye to the Windy City. While I waited with our luggage cart and Mira, asleep in her carseat, Aaron took Cordy to go get the car, which was parked in a garage across the street. However, he soon returned without the car.
“I can’t get to the car. They won’t let anyone cross the street.”
Sure enough, the street was blocked off by Chicago police, with a few construction workers wandering the deserted street. They were moving steel beams by helicopter, and although I could hear the helicopter, never once did I see it pass over the street.
We waited patiently at first, hoping it would only take a few minutes. During that time, I got to say goodbye to several bloggers as they passed through the lobby, as well as chat with Lisa Stone about the need for a BlogHer Mommy conference (seriously, we need one!). Cordy ran around the lobby, tripping up men in business suits and closing off the revolving door by laying in the entrance of it.
But soon I joined Cordy in a lack of patience. We had been waiting for 45 minutes, and the street was still closed off. Cordy began to meltdown, crying because we wouldn’t let her run in between people’s legs. Mira woke up around this time and started to fuss, too.
Then it happened. Cordy had finally had enough, prompting her to lay down in the middle of the lobby floor and wail. Something in me snapped, and like flipping a light switch, I went from an understanding, accommodating softy to a pissed off mom who wasn’t going to stand for this anymore. I asked Aaron to wait with Mira, while I scooped up my screaming, thrashing toddler and marched outside to the cops.
“How much longer is this going to take?” I yelled over the helicopter noise to one of Chicago’s finest.
“Uh, I don’t know. We thought they’d be done by now. But no one can cross until they’re done.”
Cordy continued her tantrum, wailing right in his ear while I held her tight. I added a little more force to my voice. “No. We’ve been waiting for nearly an hour and I’m not waiting anymore. Our car is over there and we need to get to it. She needs lunch, we have things to do. I don’t have time to be held hostage so someone can move steel beams all day!”
The cop looked a little surprised. His voice softened a bit. “Well, you know… I don’t see any reason why you couldn’t go up that ramp to get your car. After all, uh, they’re not even flying directly over the street…” He walked towards a construction worker and I walked quickly behind him, with Cordy still screaming. After a short conversation, the construction worker gave me a thumbs up sign.
I walked back into the hotel lobby, still carrying the crying toddler, and said to Aaron, “OK, go get the car.”
“But…how did you…”
“Doesn’t matter, just get the car.”
We were on the road within 15 minutes.
And I want to add a quick apology to everyone I was going to party with on Saturday night after the cocktail party. I went back to the hotel to nurse Mira to sleep, and fell asleep myself. Sheesh, I’m old. When I woke at 3am, I figured it was too late to call. (Besides, you want to be careful falling asleep around other bloggers…)
More BlogHer tales to come…