Baseball and More Baseball


We have arrived in Chicago. It’s Wednesday and the Chicago Cubs are playing the Pittsburgh Pirates tonight. It’s also the one night we have to take an early dinner with our nephew. We have selected a great place to eat. Quartino’s is just a short walk from The Talbott Hotel and apparently great house made pasta.


We managed to do it all. We had a wonderful early meal with our nephew which DID have great house made pasta. The conversation was lively and we enjoyed the chance to catch up a bit. After dinner, it was back to our hotel for our first baseball game via the television. The Cubs won.


It’s Kenny’s birthday. For his birthday he wanted to watch the first game of the Cubs – Braves series in our hotel room and have a pizza.  Though it may sound simple, it’s a rare event for us. We are intentionally cable and satellite free at Kalaekilohana. So the idea of actually watching a baseball game on television is a novel choice.


When you add in a 17 year old Balvenie single malt and the cupcakes the hotel sent up, it turns out that ordering pizza in and watching the ballgame on television is a great way to spend a birthday. That the Cubs won was icing on the cake.


The plan today involves actually going to Wrigley Field for the first time since they finished the new conference center and grass park next to the stadium on Clark Street. We are thinking of getting burritos from the place under the EL and seeing if we can go into the park area to enjoy them. We’ll be taking the Red Line to the game.


Everything was better than expected! The Red Line was full, but efficient. El Burrito was just as good as the last time we were at the game. The park was absolutely wonderful. Coming around the corner from Addison onto Clark was a real treat. There was live music and kids playing catch and lots of friendly faces at the friendly confines. It’s funny, but I stopped calling Wrigley the friendly confines over the years because I grew tired of the idea of welcoming other teams into the park and getting trounced. You could just imagine how the players on the other teams used the term. OF course, now that has all changed. We’re finally winners. Oh yea- Cubs won.


Today we meet up with Kenny’s cousin Karen and her husband John for another ballgame. We invited them to join us for the game. John still roots for the Pirates since he grew up around there, but he likes the Cubs well enough. Although we were going to be bringing Subway into the park for our lunch, we turned them onto El Burrito since they would be arriving via the Red Line.


Today was a wild one on the field. The two teams scored 26 runs between them and there was a lot of action, including a grand slam. El Burrito was a big hit as was the ability to enjoy it within the confines of the park, which is restricted to ticket holders. We found time to buy our raffle tickets for the player quality world series ring, which will undoubtedly raise a ton of money for Cubs charities. The trophy room was a bit crowded, so we put it off until we visit again next time. We followed up the game with a good meal at Bandera’s on Michigan and Grand. The live jazz was a nice touch. All in all, a great day. Cubs won!