(Not Quite) Enormous Changes at the Last Minute

Here’s how we got here:
When we were at Disney last January, we struck up a conversation with a “Castmember,” Richard, about roller coasters.  Richard told us we really needed to go to Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio–a mere 5 hour drive from our house.  Why not let a stranger you met while waiting for a bus plan your next summer vacation?
So, we bought tickets during a Presidents’ Day BOGO sale and planned a massive road trip.  We’d drive 5 hours to Sandusky, then 9 hours to the Wisconsin Dells, then a short hop to Milwaukee (for Summerfest), and then 10 hours to get home in time for the kids to start Brighton Summer Arts.  We don’t usually (meaning pretty much never) take road trips, but what the heck … a couple 10 hour drives, we’ll do it!  Then, three days before our trip, it became clear the weather would be horrible. Thunderstorms, 100% chance of rain at Cedar Point, and though I’m certain Sandusky’s a lovely town full of charm, it’s fair to say that Cedar Point was the only reason we were going there.  So, it was looking like we would drive 5 hours, stay three days there, and do … nothing except wait to drive 9 hours to the Dells.  But …
What if someone had the bright idea–two days before we were to leave town–to check for Hotwire mystery airfare to and a hotel in Chicago?  What if that mystery fare were about 40% cheaper per ticket, and a 4.5 star hotel room in the Windy City cost a third of our Fairfield Inn room in Sandusky?  What if we could rent a car in the city surprisingly cheaply and finish the rest of our trip as though nothing had changed?  What if one of us were willing to sit on hold with Cedar Point for 75 minutes–long enought to finish work emails, get the kids moving for lunch, drive to Chipotle, order and eat that lunch, and then drive over to TJ Maxx for new bags–to get her non-refundable Fast Lane Plus passes refunded?  Ta-dah!  That’s how we got here, plunked down in the ROC airport waiting for literally the last flight out of town on Friday, armed with new carry-on bags, a spanking new itinerary, and a collection of Deadpool comics that weighs about 10 pounds.  Really, Penn?!  Happy Summer!
By the way, that someone often travels dressed like this. Yep, 3 different stripes plus the leggings.

And, our room at the Hyatt McCormick Place was cheap enough (seriously, it was $62!) that when we checked in, we upgraded to this view.

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