Chicago is…

Back in the 80’s, I watched a show called Webster staring Emmanuel Lewis. It’s about an African American child adopted by a Greek family… I think. Anyway once in a while his uncle played by Ben Vereen, would come and end up singing and dancing. One particular episode He and Emmanuel performed My Kind of Town. Back then, I never thought I would ever go to Chicago. That idea remained with me until last February, when we booked the trip.

When we finally arrived at union station, the first impression was, it’s really warm. The mad hatter mentioned the humidity, but I didn’t notice it. Anyway it was hot, which I like. We were still underground and making our way, the kids and I, through to the Baggage terminal while husband was trying to catch a cab to the car rental station. We all know how that turned out. Husband called it a waste of $20. Anyway my cousin, thank goodness for family, came with his wife and drove the hour to pick us up.

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Before we went, we watched a video on Chicago and it started off with the things that person doesn’t like about Chicago. He said the traffic is worse than LA. He said the parking is expensive, and he said the pan handlers are annoying.

Well I wouldn’t say the traffic is worse than LA, but it’s close. The parking is like unto Calgary, except there isn’t any street parking, at least where I saw. They have underground parking everywhere and all garages are about $20. Some places, like Navy Pier, they have earlybird parking for $15 and that ends at 10:00am.

Anyway true to the video, we were panhandle 4 times before we left Union Station, but I didn’t find them annoying. They took “No” for and answer, and even joked around with us. Others might have felt for there safety, but I can honestly say not once did I worry.

We met my cousin on Madison. He greeted us with “Welcome to America, where the trains are never on time and the rental places are always closed.” We loaded up and made our way to Sycamore, where he and his family live.

Cute town Sycamore is. The land of historic looking houses, nice weather and well maintained lawns. Seriously, I could live there. It was late when we got there and so we bedded down quickly to prepare for the next day.

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The next day started off with a trip to Cracker Barrel, which was awesome, cause I have never been. To those who haven’t been there, I don’t know if I can quite describe it. We have nothing like this in Canada, that I am aware of. I assume, and we all know what that does, that the concept came from the south, because there are Hi, y’alls and yes mams from everyone. It made me wonder if they devote a special section of training on how to talk to the customer. There is a Country style dining room attached to a store full of “do-hickies”, and “whatchamacallits.” My kids enjoyed playing checker and rocking in the chairs that line the front of the building.

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After the enormous portions of delicious food, we headed to the city. To the museum of science and industry. The museum, where 5 hours wasn’t nearly enough to make it through. After the Museum we decided to go up Willis Tower, formerly named the Sears Tower.  More will be said on these adventures later.

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Overall Chicago is a Clean beautiful city. At least the areas we were in. Although I wouldn’t live there, right in the hub, it too busy for my liking, but I would live close and go into the city often.

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