Day 01 - Dinner.

Well we had our first Route 66 diner experience tonight. We ate at the Artists Café. Its at 412 South Michigan Ave., about 2 blocks from the start of the highway. We met Irene Makris, she was one of the owners. The diner has been there since 1961 and has been owned by her family since the beginning. We enjoyed it.

They don't take credit cards so you have to be prepared with cash but the place just had a really cool old vibe to it. Not a roadside diner but more like the type of diner you would expect to look into the booth next to you and see Jerry and Elaine and George and the Krammer.

Irene was delightful. When she found out we were from San Francisco, she told us a story about a shoe store on Union Square that she has shoes delivered from all the time. Irene has a bit of a shoe thing.

We told Irene that we had came from California to drive Route 66 and she immediately lit up with things to tell us about. At one point she said. "Well you know, the end of the road is just a couple blocks from here." To which I interrupted, "Well don't you mean the START of the road."

Irenes eyes lit up. I think she was impressed that I indeed understood the significance that Route 66 was a road that really did run East to West so Chicago would be the Start of the road and not the end. It meant something to her that I understood that. 

The "ownership of ideals" is something that is important to people and I think that I scored some points with Irene because I knew where the road really does 'begin'.

The food was good and the architecture and decor were awesome, plus Irene told us some fun stuff to see in the morning.

After dinner we went for a walk around the neighborhood and saw the Chicago El go overhead. We had to stop and take some pictures and video... Luckily I had the Flip Camera in my pocket.


I love old funky, touristy camera stores, although I never buy anything from them. This place was right under the El and I noticed it because of the "Since 1899". That was the year my grandfather was born.


« Day 01 - The Journey Begins. | Main | Day 02 - The city and the car. »

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Reader Comments (3)

Great so far - fun to see the videos and love the stories - Irene may wear Aerosoles -

Monday, May 31, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTerry Fenwick

Hi, I found this site from fooling around on frilckr map. I live in Springfield MO and work close to the Solo Cup factory. The picture of Beth holding "the cup" made me laugh so I flipped trough some of your flickr pages. I ended up following the journey from day one. Thank you for sharing, it was great!. Now i am looking forword to taking the journey in this format.

Friday, July 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBrad Smith

I love the video. The Fip must be nice.

Friday, July 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBrad Smith

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