i took a recent opportunity to make a second visit to chicago. the first time it was in january some years ago i believe for a conference and it was cold, windy, slushy, wet, stuff like that. not fun as a summary. having lived in new york i was aware of cold and slush and whatnot. the extreme wind was new and not really appreciated. i normally like wind but on nice fun happy days to fly one of my kites. this was just mean wind. completely uncalled for.
so my view of chicago has been of a cold, dark, windy and slushy city that could make duck boots go south for the winter.
after this visit i must say that my eyes were opened to a much much better city than the vision i had in my mind and i admit that i was wrong with my initial impression.
the weather was good in august. unfortunately i was told that it lasts only a few months of the year and so summer is attacked with gusto. chicago has the big city feel like new york but it appeared more relaxed. there were tons of people exercising everywhere.
normal and crazy cyclists as well like every place i’ve been to. there is a beach. yeah. sand and water. that kind of beach. people were playing beach volleyball. along this area is a great path for walking, running, and biking.
like the bosque path with beautiful views all around, just different. it just didn’t occur to me that this was touching the great lakes and there would be sand.
chicago like a good major city has a nice public transportation system. easy, on time buses, trains and subway. always a plus for getting around town if you don’t want to have a car. the traffic didn’t seem crazy but it may have been the area and hours that i was seeing it.
during a walk the opportunity of catching the aquarium came up. you can see the long line to get in.
there were lots of fish big and small.
dangerous frogs as well.
i stopped taking pictures quickly realizing it was a pointless endeavor as i needed hours to do a proper job.
there is also a water taxi service among a few locations. during the short trip i saw several things.
this is a three masted ship.
an old (or reproduced) ship that still sails.
a ferris wheel near the dock.
there is also sailing here, something i have an interesting in learning as one of the items on my life skills list. my version of a bucket list i guess since one could argue that you’re dying from the moment you are born. chicago is now on my list of places i will look at when i decide to learn to sail. i was able to do an evening sail and it was beautiful. it’s also not easy to take a steady photo on a moving boat while you’re also steering it. steering was fun by the way even though when i got bored with it i was needed to stay there so the captain could mess with the sails. the city completely lights up so well. of course this is really great to see from the water.
chicago has professional level sports as well. i was also able to catch my first professional sporting event at us cellular field.
it was a sox vs yankees game. right at the edge of the batters area where it connects to the run to first base you can see a little white dot. that’s the ball.
the stadium was much bigger than the isotopes field but i like my isotopes better. much more intimate. i was told a cubs game at wriggly field might be better. there is also soldier field stadium for a bears game if i can catch one during good weather. after the game, and my last evening, i was able to catch a beautiful shot of the city at night.
on another visit i’ll see about the arts and entertainment that they had to offer as well.
-Santa’s Fallen Angel