Walking is good.
I had a friend once who taught me everything I know about saving a buck. It's never about the money. It's about the fact that there are people who want you to spend money on things you shouldn't have to spend money on, and expect you to give fork it over. Then it becomes a mission to see how far out of your way it is necessary to go to make sure you do not pay them.
This year the Health and Fitness Expo is at the great, hideous I-X Center, located some fifteen miles from downtown, next to the airport. The Expo is free, and they do provide shuttle service from the Hilton downtown. However, the I-X Center charges a "standard parking fee" if you drive there. This fee is eight dollars.
The edge of civilization.
I could have taken the shuttle, but was not planning to go downtown to wait at the Hilton before getting on a bus to head to the airport. Not part of my schedule. My mother suggested I park and walk, and I assumed this would be impossible ... that would be like, well, finding free parking near the airport. Can't be done.
Well, it can. I parked at some warehouse across 237 and hoped I wouldn't get towed. And I started to walk. Crossing 237 is very dangerous, but I did that. And I walked by restricted areas, but not into them. It is a beautiful day for a walk.
The East Entrance was guarded by a guy in a day-glo vest who said I need to go around the building to enter, and I didn't argue. It would add maybe a half mile to my trip but I'd gotten that far.
A guy in a parking lot cart pulled up while I was texting and offered me a lift, which was very, very cool. He also told me that when I left, I should exit through the Eastern doors, save myself a trip around the building.
No indoor ferris wheel today.
The Expo is like all the others, a knocked-up shopping mall for running people. But I wasn't there to shop, just get my bib number and shirt, and leave as soon as possible. I did get a few gels, jelly beans for the kids (they have their run at the stadium tomorrow) and a protein bar for the walk back. I filled my water bottle and headed out the East entry, waving a kind "see ya" to the guy in the bright vest who wouldn't let me in.
My car was right where I left it. And I saved eight bucks.