I've been in Milwaukee, staying with my friends Patricia Hoben and Charlie Carter, since last Saturday, and I really have fallen in love with this city. The people are friendly; the weather is gorgeous; and Lake Michigan is spectacular. Patricia convinced me to stay awhile and settle in, and I am so glad she did, because the road weariness was hitting me hard.
I've been sleeping and exploring the area while she and Charlie are at work, and taking their cockapoos, Snickers and Allie, for walks around their tree-lined neigborhood that sits on the bluff of Lake Michigan. I've found cool, local coffee shops, museums, and walking trails. Patricia and Charlie have been so kind, feeding me, taking me out to dinner, plying me with good wine, and urging me to make myself totally at home.
Sunday night, Patricia and Charlie had a party for the faculty of the Carmen Schools, charter schools that Patricia started. What an amazing and energetic group of people. And what a fun night. Charlie grilled brats that he'd soaked in beer, along with chicken thighs and legs, and everyone brought side dishes.
The teachers are already working, orienting the students to the Carmen way. On Monday, Patricia took me to see the northside campus, and my opinion of charters, at least in Carmen's case, has changed somewhat (http://www.carmenhighschool.org/).
(this park is close to where i am staying. The statue was put there because this was a prime spot for people who wanted to kill themselves by driving off the cliff into Lake Michigan, according to my hosts)
Tuesday night, Patrick, Patricia and Charlie's son, and his friend, Chris, came for dinner, so that we could finish up the chicken left over from the party. Charlie made the most delicious brussel sprouts an bacon, and afterwards, Charlie, Patrick, and Chris introduced me to Kopp's Frozen Custard (https://www.kopps.com).
Omigod, it was so worth waiting for! I had a waffle cone with peppermint patty ice cream.