8/12- 8/14/88…Weekend with Menudo, Chicago

High Voltage (Corina, Marcie, & I) welcoming the newest member Angelo to Chicago 8/12/88

High Voltage (Corina, Marcie, & I) welcoming the newest member, Angelo, to Chicago 8/12/88

Just under a month since arriving back from our 3 week stay in Puerto Rico, we had another Menudo adventure to look forward to.  They were scheduled to perform at the Pan-American Fest again on August 13th.  I was so excited that we would be seeing them again so soon.  It was now expected that we would see them at the airport the day they arrived, and that we did.  It was cool because they actually had some recollection of seeing us (especially Ricky, Ruben, & Angelo) while we were in Puerto Rico.  Those were the three we had actually seen outside of shows while we were there.  I brought a couple mini photo books to show them all recent pictures from when we had seen them in PR and Chicago.  It was fun watching them look through them.

When we found out what hotel they were staying at, we decided to head over there after they got all their luggage.  What we hadn’t planned on was staying at that hotel.  But once we got there we made a quick decision to make a weekend out of it.  At this point, we had been getting around in my mom’s car.  As soon as we got our room, we decided to make a quick run home to pack some clothes for the weekend.  My mom’s car had been having problems with overheating and unfortunately on the way home, it overheated and we couldn’t get it started again.  BOOO!!  We got a ride back to the hotel, but that killed our means of transportation for the rest of the weekend.  What sucked about that was later that evening, when we were up on the guys’ floor hanging out, Sergio pulled me aside and asked me if I had a car.  He wanted to go OUT!!  Oh man, what a missed opportunity.  Can’t tell you how badly I wished I still had my mom’s car.  UGH!!  Well, then somehow Kelene got to talking about all of us going to hang at her house.  Everyone agreed.  The only one that was sort of not into it was Ricky.  While we were all getting ready to leave and were talking in the parking lot I overheard Ricky say to Ruben in Spanish, “Why don’t we just stay here?  We can drink and have fun in the room.”  I looked at him and said, “What?  I understand everything you just said.”  He didn’t believe it and asked, “What did I say?”  When I repeated it back to him in English, he was completely dumbfounded.  And kinda started laughing.  He was like, “I didn’t say that.”  And I said “Yeah, you did.”  And Ruben just laughed too.  Ricky finally gave in and we all got into a caravan of cars and headed to Kelene’s.  The rest of the night Ricky kept remarking about me speaking Spanish.  He was so impressed.  It was hilarious.  I can’t even remember how long we were at her house.  But we had a good time.

Ruben & I at Kelene's house. 8/12/88

Ruben & I at Kelene’s house. 8/12/88

The next night the guys performed at the Pan-American Fest.  I don’t even remember the show and one of my rolls of film was lost by Walgreen’s which is why I don’t have concert shots or more shots from Kelene’s house. 🙁

Corina & I on our way to the Menudo concert. 8/13/88

Corina & I on our way to the Menudo concert. 8/13/88

My friend, Valerie, who was in love with Ruben had given him our room number and kept telling him to call.  At around midnight, (after the concert) he ended up calling our room.  Everyone was asleep but me.  He never said it was him, but I knew his voice, so I played along.  I ended up talking to him for HOURS.  It was surreal.  The next morning, he kept pretending he didn’t know what I was talking about when I referred to our conversation.  He got me so frustrated because he went along denying it was him ALL morning.

Finally just before he boarded the plane he was like, “Mara, it was me.”  Ay ay ay!

Ruben & I @ O'Hare Airport the day they left Chicago. 8/14/88  Immediately before this photo he finally told me it was him that had called me in the room the night before.

Ruben & I @ O’Hare Airport the day they left Chicago. 8/14/88 Immediately before this photo he finally told me it was him that had called me in the room the night before.

This was such a special  weekend for me because it was pretty much the last encounter that I would have with the group as a diehard fan.  Two weeks later I went away to college and, musically, things began to change for me…A LOT!!

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