Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Finally, Chicago trip details, and one other thing
Chicago. What can I say other than we had a blast! The above picture is one of G on the Architectural River Cruise. You can see all the other pictures here. I took loads of pictures of the displays inside the Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium as well as buildings we saw on the cruise. Two and half days is definitely not enough time to see and experience all that is Chicago!
Our flight took off at 11:55 a.m. You'll see in the first picture of my photos that G wasn't looking very happy about flying. By the time we got up in the air, she was all smiles and admitted that old mom was right, flying isn't so bad. :-)We took the orange line elevated train through the city. It was amazing to see just how close some of the trains come to the buildings! From there, we hopped on the red line subway train to the Grand Ave. stop. Our hotel was one block to the left and 2 blocks down the street on Ontario, right off Michigan Ave. As per usual when I plan a trip, even to St. Louis, there is always a glitch. I had a typo when I googled the directions to the place we needed to pick up the GoChicago discount cards. I put in South when it should have been North. It took us in opposite direction all the way at the other end of Michigan Ave. Where we needed to go was only within 3 blocks walking distance from our hotel. It was nice that none of us got stressed and whigged out over it as would have been the case if D was with us. By the time we got the discount cards, it was 5ish and we were all starving balls. We ended up at a Thai restaurant, called Dao, for dinner. They had reasonably priced and good food. We all liked it except for G. Pad Thai is nothing like Lo Mein. We ended up stopping at a Starbucks right across the street from our hotel for a coffee and I bought G a turtle brownie. It was still pretty early in the evening so I suggested going to see a movie at the Loew's theater. We saw Kung Fu Panda. Yawn! I was really disappointed in it. Jack Black is a favorite of mine and I thought it'd would be funnier. I ended up taking a cat nap during it. So did my mom but that's nothing new because if she sits still for more than 10 minutes, she falls asleep.
The next day we got up and went to breakfast at Viand which was in the Marriott across the street from our hotel. Very good food but very expensive. Then we headed out to catch the 146 bus to the Museum Campus. Like the day before, we messed up when we hopped on the 146 bus and took a very scenic drive down Lake Shore Drive. I finally asked the bus driver if we were on the right bus to which he said no. We got on the wrong 146 bus. So we waited about 15 minutes for the right one and wouldn't you know it, our stop was at the very end of the route. I won't bore you with the details but we were able to go to all the places I had planned - Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, and the Architectural River Cruise. We ended up taking a river taxi from below the Shedd to the Navy Pier so we got to ride on Lake Michigan (Shoreline cruise without the narration). The Architectural Cruise took right an hour so we were done by 5 p.m. We walked a couple blocks to catch a bus back to our hotel. Realistically we could have just walked from Navy Pier back but my poor mother doesn't move quite as fast as she once did (arthritis in her hips). We cleaned up and walked back over to the Loew's movie theater and went to dinner at Heaven on Seven. Very yummy! Kids' menu was on $5.95. My mom and MIL were tired so after we dropped them off at the hotel, G and I set out to walk down Michigan Ave. in search of a Walgreen's to pick up cheap souvenirs for us.
Wednesday we got up and walked a couple blocks to the Corner Bakery and Cafe for breakfast. We walked over to the Eddie Bauer and did a little shopping. I got me a couple pair of nice slacks originally $49 a pair for $15 a pair. Rock on! I usually can never find bargains for my size so I super pumped about it. Because we couldn't find anything in G's size that I wanted to pay for, we dropped my mom off at the hotel and my MIL, me, and G, headed back down Michigan Ave. to the Macy's. We immediately saw the Lush shop and stopped there. G was able to get her another Happy Pill and grandma paid half for some shower jelly. By the time we got back we had to head back to hotel to pick up my mom and the luggage and go to the airport. We all pitched in and took a taxi. We just couldn't fathom doing the EL route all over again.
I will definitely go back to Chicago. I grew up in the 'burbs/country and thought I would never say this but if I was young, single, childless, I could definitely see myself living there. No way in hell I'd have a car - public transportation all the way for me. Anyway, I am hoping that I can work it out to make Chicago an annual mother/daughter trip. I had that much fun.
Lastly, this past Sunday, June 22nd, D and I celebrated our 17th year of marriage. I complain about him a lot but like Dana at mamalogues.com said better than I ever could, "I believe in two things: that there is that one person out there for everyone, your soulmate; also that one person who is the only person that can put up with you for all your life."