This past weekend Randy and I flew to the Windy City to visit friends. Considering all of the travel Randy has done in the past, it’s surprising to realize that he’s never actually visited the city of Chicago. He’s flown through O’Hare Aiport more times than he’d care to remember, but he’s never actually ventured into the city itself…
…until Friday. Our flight arrived around 9PM (20 minutes early…yay) and my friend, Dave, picked us up from the airport. He brought us to this tasty wood-fired pizza place where we got a late dinner, then headed back to his place – a rather cool loft in an old postcard manufacturing facility.
By that point it was rather late so we hung out and chatted for an hour or so before hitting the hay around after 1AM.
That was our first mistake of the trip because we never left the house on Saturday until close to noon, missing out on more than half of the day’s sunlight hours. Still, we went to a great little restaurant called Cafe 28 for breakfast/lunch (not really brunch, though) before hopping on the subway and exploring the Museum of Contemporary Art and Magnificent Mile.
At night, we met up with our friend, Kate, at a Turkish (owned, but not necessarily food) restaurant in the Roscoe Village area of the city. The service was slow (a full 45 minutes between taking our order and the food actually arriving), but it tasted great as everything was made from scratch/made to order. We finished eating around 10PM but lingered and laughed until close to midnight. Exhausted, we skipped going out and lounged lazily back at the loft.
By Sunday, the weather began to warm up (lower 60′s), yet we still managed not to leave the house until 11:30am. With daylight savings time coming to an end, this provided us with only 4 hours of sunlight by the time we finished our mid-day breakfast. But we crammed a lot into those few hours: Art Institute (saw the new wing plus standards like American Gothic), then Millennium Park and the famous Cloud Gate sculpture, then wound our way up to the 96th floor of the Hancock Tower to view the sunset and have over-priced drinks and appetizers. After being sufficiently mesmerized by the view, we walked the Magnificent Mile down to the Wrigley and Chicago Tribune buildings and walked along the river, viewing the new Trump Tower and old Marina City (the corncob buildings) among other things.
We met up with our friend, Kate, again for dinner, this time in the Southport area…ironically in the northern part of the city and many miles from the waters of Lake Michigan. The place was called Coobah, and served DELICIOUS Cuban inspired food. Damn, that was good.
We then headed back to Kate’s place, where we spent our last night chatting, listening to music, and eating chocolate chip cookies Kate baked. MMMMMMMMMMMM.
Finally, we managed to actually wake up reasonably early on Monday and headed into the Loop area for a self-guided architecture tour of Chicago (home of the skyscraper). Randy took some great pics (which I’ll get uploaded one of these days) and then we headed back to Kate’s place to prepare ourselves for our return flight home.
The trip just flew by…even with the extra hour that the end of daylight savings time provided. And the weather was spectacular…with 100% sunshine every day and temperatures in the mid and upper 60′s…amazing for Chicago in November. All in all, a great time.
Oh, and the photo I’m posted above was from my first trip to Chicago nearly two decades ago. Hopefully I’ll have some from this trip in the next few days.
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