The drive from Bloomington to Chicago must be one of the most boring and least-scenic of roadways I have ever seen. Driving up to Indy is pretty much the same as usual, but once you pass Indy, there is absolutely nothing. NOTHING. Not really even anything interesting on the sides of the roads. No major towns until you get up to Gary/Chicago area. I passed Lafayette and Purdue I think, but saw nothing of note from the highway except for some salt mines. But, about 5 hours later (including a pitstop in Morocco), I made it to Chicago. I’m staying in a pretty nice hotel downtown, preparing for my interview with AEON tomorrow. AEON, for those wondering, is an English school in Japan. Sounds fancy; I think I have a decent chance at getting in. However, Bryan Reynolds also applied last year and didn’t get in, which leaves me worried. Maybe the A-Team is too super qualified for this kind of job. I’m considering playing down my experience, which is really tough since half of my resume is Japan or Japanese-related stuff. We’ll see. Also sometime between now and the interview tomorrow at 1PM, I have to make up a 15-minute lesson plan for the group interview. I guess I’ll just try to pull something out of the memories of my stint of teaching English at Takanawadai High School.

I’d never driven to Chicago before. I’ve been here quite a few times, but it was always either my parents driving, flying, or taking a bus. Anyway, the drive wasn’t too bad (except for the excruciatingly boring aspects); I do like the drive to St. Louis better. Also, before you get into Chicago proper, you pass through this industrial zone where every building spits smoke of varying levels of pollution (including neon blue!). Maybe that was Gary? Yes, that part of the world looked pretty bad from what I saw. The legends are true!

Toll roads. I get to the first toll gate, and was preparing for the worst. 15 cents. Sweet; I can deal with that. Then the next one: 50 cents. A big increase, but still, not too bad. Then a little bit more down the road and I hit the last of my toll gates of the night. This one, however, is a whopping $2.50. What. The. Heck. Chicago.???! They lure you into thinking “oh wow, these toll roads ain’t so bad.” But once you’re on the road and there’s already no way out, they slam you at the end with a huge price increase. 15 cents should be the maximum or something. The roads weren’t even THAT much better than a standard highway. Bah.

Up to now, spring break has been just working on IUSTV stuff everyday at the office, usually until about 8 or 9 at night. I’m kind of glad that I got to come up to Chicago for a few days, just to get away from everything. Sure, tomorrow afternoon after my interview I’ll probably come back to the hotel to work on IUSTV stuff (e-mail, scheduling stuff, etc), but it’s still like a vacation for me. I want to check out the Field Museum, Chinatown, and Mitsuwa. All of which I think I’ll be able to pull off, since I’m staying here until Saturday afternoon. If anyone else is around Chicago, call me and we can hang out. Otherwise I’ll just be museum-ing it up myself. God I’m such a dork. But they have an exhibit on evolution!

Driving for 5 hours by yourself with nothing to do but listen to CDs gives you a lot of time to think to yourself. I can’t really remember if there was anything important (there certainly wasn’t anything deep), but I do remember the revelation about sleep. Recently, I’ve been getting more sleep than I ever have since I was very very young (probably before I entered elementary school), save for weekends, breaks, etc. Nowadays, with my demanding College Senior class schedule, I sleep pretty much 8 hours every day. I wake up feeling fine, never need to nap, don’t feel tired, and life, in summary, is good. This is coming off a long stretch (middle school to junior year of college) where I would instead get about 5 or 6 hours of sleep, I would wake up tired all the time, fall asleep in class, take naps, etc. Getting 8 hours sleep is definitely a good thing. I actually think I’ve written about this before on the blog (well, probably just bragging about my awesome schedule), but I just wanted to throw it out there again.

Now, I’m watching Champloo on Adult Swim in my hotel room, thinking about what I should make my lesson plan about, and I have already planned out my morning schedule for tomorrow. I’m going to wake up around 9AM to get everything organized, printed, and to make sure I show up at the interview place ON TIME (yeah, we all know I have a bad habit about being late for everything). Once that’s over, time to explore downtown Chicago. SPRING BREAK 2K6!!!! WOOOOOOO!