I am leaving for Chicago tonight. Although this trip was planned few months ago, I only told my mom about it about 2 weeks ago. Mom has a tendency to "hijack" my trips, and lessen my love for traveling. I love totally exploring a city, getting lost in its streets, tasting the local cuisine, enriching myself in its culture.
My mom likes to conquer a city like it's a to-do list that she must get to the end of as quickly as possible. Specifically, I remember her dragging me throughout New York exactly 10 years ago, quickly pausing to take pictures and then jettisoning off to the next tourist spot.
Five years ago, we took a road trip to Zion and Bryce Canyon. We drove for hours to reach these gorgeous national parks, jumped out of the car to take pictures, and then were told to get back in the car so that we could stay on schedule. "We don't even have time to hike?" Her response: "No, we only have time to take pictures and go." She wasn't kidding.
She later says to me, "Oh I wish I had known earlier that you were going to Chicago. I would have gone with you."
She could have completely ruined Chicago for me.