Thursday, January 14, 2010

Things Really Took a Strange Turn After Tru

After our amazing dessert tasting at Tru, we headed out to meet our friend Ashley for her bday at The Boundary in Wicker Park.  They had a great beer selection, I may have accidentally sold a baby zebra, and I volunteered myself to ride a tiger in someone's wedding (though I have to steal the tiger).

However, that was a relatively normal evening by my standards.  After The Boundary, we set out to get some tacos at La Pasadita.  La Pasadita is located at 1132 N. Ashland (though there are three La Pasaditas on the same block...unclear why) and its website is  As a bonus, it is open until 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

I pulled up to the restaurant, saw a parking lot nearly full of cars, and parked therein.  I walked into the restaurant and browsed the menu.  The menu was not incredibly diverse (only about 4 types of meats that could be put on a taco or in a burrito).  After debating between tongue and carne asada (not really), I ordered 3 carne asada tacos.  They were juicy and amazingly flavored.  They were among the best tacos that I have ever had.

Feeling sated from the delicious tacos that I just ate, I noticed something peculiar once I got outside.  The parking lot full of cars that I  parked in no longer had any cars in it - including my own.  I instantly realized that I was either the victim of the world's greatest car thief (like Nic Cage from Gone in 60 Seconds) or my car had been towed.  Although Nic Cage is in desperate need of money, I figured it was still pretty unlikely that he was stealing VW Jettas out of the parking lot of taco places in Chicago at 3 a.m.  After some cops told us we had been towed, we jumped in a cab to head way out west to get the car back.

We started heading in the right direction, but at some point the cab driver decided to go adventuring in a different direction.  Evetually he turned off the meter when he realized he had driven across the city in the wrong direction for twenty minutes.  Finally and mercifully he dropped us off at the tow yard.  Was that the end of the adventure?  Of course not.

I paid for the towing fee and headed into the yard on the bone-chillingly cold night.  I went to get my keys from my pocket....and the keys were gone.  Fortunately I have a spare key in the car, but, of course, the door was locked.  We went out front to look for the keys on the ground, but soon realized that I had smartly left them in the cab.  Neither of us had any idea what cab had driven us there, so we could not contact them to have him come back.

Sitting out on the frozen tundra in the most desolate part of the city that I have ever seen, we had no idea what to do.  We decided to take a cab back to our house, grab the other spare key, and then head back.  We set to work hailing a cab, but naturally there were no cabs around (since there was nothing - and I mean nothing - around where we were).  Eventually a man came to get his car out of the tow yard, recognized our plight, and offered to give us a ride back toward an area with more cabs.  It just happens that this man was about 6'5" and 350 lbs.  It was a very nice offer, but my wariness of other people made me reluctant to accept.  I glanced around pondering whether I would rather freeze to death or be murdered in a Seabring.  I opted for the latter and hopped in the Seabring with our driver, Jermaine.  Jermaine pulled out of the yard ever so slightly and then began screaming obscenities at the tow yard.  Could anyone hear him?  Was anyone even there?  I don't know, and I don't really think he cared.  Miraculously, he did not even attempt to murder us before he dropped us off at Damen and North.

Once we arrived at Damen, we hopped in a cab.  I was careful to observe the cab number (3590) in case I left anything else in this cab (fortunately I didn't).  While on the way to the apartment, I had a vision come down from the sky to me.  The cab colors of the cab I left my keys in flashed before me (yellow with a red roof).  We asked our cab driver what cab company had those colors, and (after repeating himself several times) we came up with King Drive Cabs. 

We looked up the number and called to see if they had the key to the car (it was now rounding 5 a.m.).  They did not have anything, but said they would call if they found it.  Even more miraculously than not being murdered, the cab company called at about 6 a.m. to let us know that they had the key.  We took down the address so that we could get in the next day, and (as seemed to be the trend that night) it was really far away.  In fact, it was at King Drive and 80th Street.  Perhaps I spoke too soon about not being murdered.

The next day, I got up, took yet another cab to the tow yard on the West Side with my spare key to get my car out, gave the finger to the tow yard, hopped on the highway to drive to the South Side, grabbed my key from the cab guy, and finally headed home.  I had seen every part of the city (North, West, and South) in a two hour span.

For those of you keeping track at home, I went from eating dessert at a super-high-end restaurant to devouring tacos at 3 a.m., and finally to hitchhiking across the city.

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