Afternoon flight out of Cleveland on my last day, but I was determined to see the West Side Market after hearing all the hype around it.
I woke up early to make sure I had time to wander around the market. The website listed the market to open at 07:00, and I made my way there by 08:00. There were only a few stands open. Again. I guess to see the whole place alive you need to show up around noon or so. Anyways, I did manage to take home some goodies from a couple of vendors that were open for business. I visited Campbell’s Popcorn Store and helped myself to a few samples. I ended up buying bags of Dichotomy Corn (a cheese and caramel mix that they’re famous for, and for good reason) and the Caramel Apple Corn (which tastes exactly like I think it should). They also had some delicious-looking baked treats behind the glass but I knew I’d smush them before I got to eat any of them. Sadness. I also visited J & J Czuchraj Meats. The girl behind the counter was really friendly and super patient while I stared at the products behind the glass and made her sort everything I wanted into little bags. This stand is apparently famous for their beef jerky, and have even been featured on TV. I’m not big on processed meats, but a couple of family members are, so I collected a good sampling to take home. And also make my suitcase smell like beef. I did taste their mild beef jerky, and I did like it. Part of me is upset that I didn’t get other flavors of jerky to try, but they do have an online shop and you can place an order online. If I decide that I can eat $20 worth of jerky, I’ll place an order. Maybe I can have a jerky-themed party or something. I also got a variety of what they called “smokies,” which look like Slim Jims. I haven’t eaten them, but several of them have gone missing from my refrigerator, so someone in my house must be enjoying them.
I took the red line from the market to Tower City. OMG. That train was the slowest rail line I have ever been on. But walking around the downtown area in the morning was great. It was a nice contrast from the pouring rain I encountered on my first days. It was nice and sunny, and I wanted to walk out to the Hope Memorial Bridge. On the trolley tour a few days ago, PJ mentioned that the best view of downtown Cleveland was from this bridge. Of course, I sat on the wrong side of the trolley so I couldn’t get a good picture during the tour.
Oh, and a passerby who saw me taking pictures was quick to point out that I should snap this one to the right. I wonder if you can see it from Quicken Loans Arena. I didn’t think of it until just now. If you know, I’m curious.