Chicagoland

by Ginger on June 10, 2009

in Celebrations

This past weekend, N.C. and I boarded a jet plane and flew off to Chicago for a belated anniversary trip (thanks to some airline ticket vouchers and Priceline) that was a sorely needed break from the “real world.” For four whole days, we were without email, blogs, twitter, facebook, anything. It was really nice to just…be. We took our time exploring, took it easy, and just enjoyed the city and each other.

chicagosign

We got to stay in an amazing hotel (The Palmer House Hilton), which is apparently this big, fancy, extremely well known historical hotel. Once again, Priceline Roulette doesn’t let us down! Seriously though, we booked the hotel through the name your own price feature on Priceline and got an amazing steal on this great hotel. The rooms were a little small, but the hotel is something like 90 years old, so we’ll cut them some slack. I only wish we had gotten some pictures of the absolutely amazing ceiling in the lobby!

Because of the whole preganacy thing, we took this trip pretty easy, doing one “big” thing per day every day we were there. We had to limit our walking more than we normally would have (thanks to super swollen feet and the slow pregnant woman waddle), but I still think we hit a lot of the big points of downtown Chicago. Of course we hit up “The Bean” the first day we were there.

thebean2

A friend of ours had tried to explain this odd sculpture to us before, but honestly, until we were there looking at it, we didn’t get the uniqueness. The reflection of the city in this oddly shaped sculpture is pretty striking.

thebean

People take pictures of themselves in the reflection of The Bean, since it is basically a giant mirror. We did too, but apparently we stood in front of the portion that had just had a milkshake thrown at it (in other words, the shot didn’t really come out), so this will have to do. But of course, as anyone who has seen The Bean knows, it’s really the experience that’s trippy. You can walk through the middle of the sculpture, and get right up close to it, and it’s all very bizarre, and cool, but no photos really do that experience justice.

ginger-and-the-bean

Just in case you need proof that we were there–here’s a photo of me with The Bean in the background (and a reflection of the city in my sunglasses–that’s kind of a cool shot!). After this, we did a whole lot of touristy & cool stuff like:

  • go see a man about the blues (and some cajun food!) at Buddy Guy’s Legends
  • do the double-decker city tour (always a great way to see a city, even if it’s the most touristy thing imaginable)
  • have Chicago dogs at Portillo’s
  • go see some jazz at Andy’s Jazz Club
  • enjoy a day at the Art Institute of Chicago
  • have dessert (me) and cocktails (N.C.) in the fancy lobby of our historic hotel
  • snarf down some deep dish pizza at Pizzeria Uno (the original)
  • check out the art and a mid-day concert at the Chicago Cultural Center
  • Plus we did lots of sleeping, napping and relaxing!
  • And, as a special bonus, I got the joy of a personalized tour of Chicago bathrooms, thanks to the little man hanging out on my bladder most of the trip.

While we were there, we also got to enjoy glimpses of crazy hordes of soccer fans (Honduras vs. the US, and I swear there were probably 100 Honduras fans for every US fan we saw. It was insane) and bits of the Gospel Music Festival. All in all, it was a really fantastic weekend. I’m glad we made the time to do this trip, both as our anniversary celebration and as a pre-baby vacation. It was nice to spend time together, enjoying a new city with each other. I’m always reminded of how lucky I am that N.C. and I enjoy each others company so much–we make good travel partners! And it was nice to have one last special trip that’s “just us” before our lives completely change in a few months. Even though I’m sure we’ll travel without kids in the future, we’ll be different, in a different kind of world, so it was nice to have one last fling in this non-baby universe.

Hilly June 11, 2009 at 4:15 am

I am so glad you had fun! You know, I have never been to Chicago and your post makes me want to, so thanks for that.

PS – I love your sunglasses.

Hilly´s last blog post..Acceptance And Metaphors…

Kim June 11, 2009 at 7:25 am

Isn’t the Palmer House amazing!?!? The Mister and I stayed there our first V-Day together.

Kim´s last blog post..Fly or Fry

Ali June 11, 2009 at 9:51 am

What a great trip! I’m happy FOR you that you and the man got to have one last hurrah before you become a family! So sweet.

Jessica June 14, 2009 at 7:03 pm

Awww I didn’t know you were coming! Well, I was gone but I’m so glad you had a nice time in my fair city! It’s the best in summer 🙂

Jessica´s last blog post..Weekend recap: Back from Boston

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