?Beth hungry. Want burrito.?

Those are the only intelligible words to cross my lips any more. Ever since Sunday, when Ryan Burke, Cara Leahy and I drove to Cleveland in seach of a burrito, it?s all I can think about.

?What?? you say. ?You drove all the way to Cleveland just for one burrito??

Let me clarify. I did not drive all the way to Cleveland for one burrito. I drove to Cleveland for thirteen burritos, three bags of chips, and a cup of water. You still think this sounds a little inane? Let me explain.

I?m from Denver, and we have this amazing restaurant called Chipotle. I am addicted to the burritos, and so is everyone else from the Denver area. These are no ordinary burritos. They are the biggest, heaviest, freshest burritos on the market.

I won?t go into detail because it makes me writhe in painful longing.

The closest Chipotle to this deprived town is in Cleveland, Ohio. Therefore, we set out on an expedition.

?Tripotle: The quest for the ultimate burrito,? as we have affectionately titled it. We videotaped the entire ten-and-a-half hour trip not only for posterity, but also because we are sending the video to the Chipotle corporate headquarters in Colorado.

Tripotle was more than a journey or quest ? it was the ultimate display of love for a company. The trials and tribulations we encountered were more than enough to make any weak-willed burrito lover turn around.

Here is a short list of the mishaps that befell us:

1. We borrowed my friend Jake Hamann?s car, and it has the rankest smell on Earth. I do not know what dead or rotting organic compound is in there, but the smell still hasn?t left my skin.

2. I neglected to tell Ryan and Cara that the hubcap fell off the right rear tire and the rim was badly bent ? not to mention the fact that large strips of the tire rubber peeled off frequently. I was not willing to endanger the trip, even if it meant endangering our lives ? Chipotle burritos are more important than life.

3. Ryan committed several grievous traffic violations, including coming within inches of sideswiping a car, making several illegal U-turns, running stop signs, heinous speeding and homicide ? poultricide, actually.

4. I had a problem keeping my hands on the wheel and eyes on the road, which resulted in flagrant drifting all over the highway.

5. We got lost in the terrifying suburb of Mayfield Heights, Ohio and ended up at a gas station that must be owned by Leatherface.

6. Cara, being a city girl, was scared to death of the suburban soccer moms with minivans. I doubt she?ll ever go back to Ohio.

7. It took Ryan and Cara half an hour to find Ziplock bags and a Styrofoam cooler in the supermarket because of the incompetence of the employees. Plus, the Ziplock bags were in the dairy section. Go figure.

8. Ryan couldn?t figure out how to close the Ziplock bags properly. Apparently, he didn?t quite grasp the concept of yellow and blue makes green.

9. We have several footage hours of me singing at the top of my lungs to any song that came on the radio. This footage is just plain offensive.

10. We came within 2.5 seconds of running out of gas in the middle of I-490.

11. There was a traffic jam throughout all of Pennsylvania, and the lady in the car in front of us refused to move. She?s Canadian ? ?nuff said.

Tripotle also had its excellent moments. The burritos were spectacular. We stopped at McDonald?s in Conneaut, Ohio so Ryan could satiate his french-fry urge. Little did we know we were at the number one drive-thru in America! We got excellent burritos and saw one of America?s greatest landmarks all in a day.

When all is said and done, Tripotle was a great success. Eight out of the ten Chipotle virgins are now hopelessly addicted. The other two are well on their way. The ten-and-a-half hour drive was worth it.

Look for our video on massive advertising campaigns. I am now taking orders for our next pilgrimage.

Long live the Chipotle burrito.



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