It was a day all my own and I had nothing before me but the open road & an empty minivan. I know, a dream right? Watch out Ikea Canton, here I come. Ryan asked me if I would be willing to take a little road trip on my day off over to the other side of the state to the nearest Ikea to pick up some things that he needed for the office. What a great excuse for a road trip.
I got up EARLY. Like 5:30 early to get my long run in for the week with my running partner as we push towards Riverbank in 7 short weeks. And it felt good, really good which is ironic because I am currently in the process of ending a long term relationship with ibuprofen. A very unhealthy dependent relationship but we just can’t see them when we are in them, can we? I mean look at Amy Winehouse….anyways, I digress.
Back to the adventure at hand; in the van, on the road by 9 am with a predicted arrival time of 11:30. It was about 10 am that my rumbling stomach took me on a detour that I wasn’t planning for (and I had a GPS with me so that isn’t another way to say that I got lost). It was a surprise off-ramp to the Dunkin Donuts in Okemos, MI a few minutes outside of Lansing. Hello yumminess.
And significant in a couple of ways; one, I can count on one hand the donuts I have had as an adult (when I passed my Series 7 and then my Series 66 at work, last summer after the Reeds Lake Run, and 1 with my friend Allison last spring…weird, I know). But the real significance is that Okemos was where my parents built their dream home a few short years before they separated. I haven’t been back to the house since probably early high school when my mom and I drove by it together. I couldn’t remember the address or even the street but I texted my Dad and it was literally 1.6 miles from where I was. So I headed east, turned into the subdivision of homes and began to get a little nervous about seeing the house. I could recall about where it was on the street in relationship to the caul de sac that wasn't built up yet when we lived there, but 20 years later, trees have been planted, shutters repainted and the fields covered in foundations and homes. Beyond the broad narrowing it down between 3 or 4 houses, I couldn't tell you confidently which house was ours.
Back on the road again, not feeling deeply melancholy as anticipated but actually feeling like I may be growing in my ability to process the back story of my life in a way that is reasonable and honest. So while I didn't see the house, the detour felt a bit cathartic. And let's be honest, the sugar buzz didn't hurt either.
Now for anyone who has ever been to Ikea, you know that a strategy must be in place to avoid complete consumerism hunger towards living in 750 perfectly manicured square feet. My plan of attack for this, my 3rd ever visit to Ikea, was limit and conquer. Meaning limit myself to the areas I knew I wanted to look at, get what I came for, and be on my merry way. I managed to put back the vase, candles, party napkins, pitcher, and whatever else was in that bottomless yellow bag and walk away with a wreath that felt like a touch of spring for $9.99.
Which left money in the wallet for my lunch date...with me.
I had serious plans to set up camp for a bit of the afternoon at Zingerman's in Ann Arbor. Check out the menu here.
If you ever get the chance, it is located in a really neat artsy part of the city & known for it's homemade breads, sandwiches, cheeses, all things good really. The menu itself has at least 100 sandwich options & let me tell you, I was glad I ordered a small because I couldn't even get my hands around the turkey & avocado on farm bread that I ordered. And the best part...dessert! They own the building next door in which they have created a haven of bliss (translation: scones, gelato, cakes)...and provide samples of EVERYTHING. Back in the car by 3:00 and on my way home to unload the van and return to real life. But for a time, it was nice to have a date with me.