Here I am! I got home from my business trip in Oakland on Saturday after a week of gorgeous weather (it's currently 39 degrees here in Chicago) and yes, it's good to be home, despite the chilly temps. I left my laptop at home and never managed to read much, but I had a great time. A few highlights of the trip were definitely the restaurants: Peony's for some fabulous Chinese food, Scott's Seafood restaurant, Kincaid's Steakhouse, and La Pinata for some amazing Mexican food. Our favorite was the red snapper at La Pinata - the winner, hands down.
We also drove to Napa one evening, though it was dark and there wasn't much open, but it was wonderful to be able to sit and eat outside, something you can't normally do in October where I live. During the day my co-worker and I would go up on the roof and eat our lunch, basking in the sun and quiet. It felt wonderful. Now that is one thing I do miss.
Then on Sunday one of my friends had tickets to see "Wicked", which I'd seen back in 2006, but was more than happy to go see it again. It was just as amazing as it was the first time. I did some Googling, and if I'm not mistaken, the characters of Elphaba and Fiyero were portrayed by the same actors in both productions. How cool is that? The show will be ending here in Chicago in January I believe, and it will be sad to see it go. So if you get the chance to see it, I definitely say "go for it". It's a magical experience.
Sadly there was a black cloud hovering over the city this weekend, one that ended in tragedy when it was announced on Monday afternoon that a 7-year-old boy who'd been missing since Friday was discovered murdered in a white SUV. The Amber Alerts were all over the electronic billboards on the highways the last few days, and we all kept hoping little Julian King would be found alive and unharmed. Instead it was the worst possible thing that could happened to a child. It makes me so angry that someone could value life so little to harm someone as innocent as this little boy. I think this was hit harder than usual because while I was in Oakland another boy, Cole Puffinburger, was splashed all over the news for having been allegedly kidnapped by drug dealers. Thank God he was found alive. My thoughts and prayers are with the family of Julian King, who lost two other family members in addition to Julian. No family should have to suffer such tragedy.