The five cars parked today were the result of grit and determination. I turned off of 92nd St onto Orchard, and there seemed like plenty of street parking spots available, and only one guy down the block was making the effort to fill his yard.
But as I took the dog out and walked down the block to survey the situation, I saw that that other guy was almost full, and it occurred to me... 72 degrees, cloudy, slight drizzle... I was going to stand out there for an hour just to spite the weather. I've lost 24 pounds of baby fat this past weekend, I decided that I could enjoy an hour or so.
About 10-15 minutes after grabbing the Official Car Parking Flag and my cardboard $3 sign, a car that was parked on the street pulled away. I took a seat, figuring that the next car through would take that spot. I must say I was surprised that someone took that opportunity to pull into my driveway. Being the good capitalist that I am, I didn't tell the lady about the spot that was right in front of my house (that would just be zany).
Over the course of the next hour, I parked three more cars, and decided that four was a good number, and decided to start the grill to make dinner. Here I am, 50 feet from my driveway, and a big red pick-up truck just pulls into my driveway. Certainly I make a spot for him, and figure that I will enjoy that half-a-Starbucks-raspberry-three-shot-mocha that I slip into my pocket.
For the first five days of the Fair, we have parked a total of 65 cars (compared to an 11-day total in 2010 of 144)... in other words, we are pretty close to last year's pace.
Tuesday, however, I will not be focusing on parking cars. It will be my turn to put those 24 pounds back on as My-Sugar-Na and I take our annual trek through Crazy Grazin' Day. In the two previous years, we've had some really good stuff (steak tacos from Fiesta Garribaldi last year), as well as some catastrophes, too (BBQ Chicken from Mike Murphy's Swingin' Door two years ago).
Looking at the potential grazin's, I am a little disappointed. The Usinger's Hot Dog for $2 is the same as the one at Benno's for $2.50, so I may pay the extra four bits to see if Stubborn Old Man is correct. Benno's did describe it more betterly this year. But overall, there seems to be more sweets (geared at my wife) and less fried foods and processed meats (my wheelhouse).
A lot of various dog products this year, in addition to the Benno's dog, I plan on trying the Cincinnati Chili Hot Dog at the Bud Pavilion (don't worry, I'll get a beer from Benno's so I won't have to drink the swill served with the chili dog). Another dog that'll get a go-round will likely be the Jamaican Red Hot from the Tropics at the Fair stand.
I like Reuben Rolls, so I may have one at Slim McGinns. I've had bison burgers, but curious to have a Bison Tostada at the WI Bison Producers stand. Other than that, a Fried PB&J from the Machine Shed and a Millie's Italian Sausage... well, I guess that is a lot of food, isn't it?
So let the Grazin' begin!