Tuesday, July 22, 2014

My Kind Of Town

The view of Chicago from our flight in.
It's that time in my life - the time when your parents tell you to get all your stuff out of your childhood house, because they're moving/downsizing/ready to turn your room into a home gym-craft room-etc.

You know the stuff: high school yearbooks, stuffed animals, a box of pictures of the ex (or exes, as the case may be), mix tapes, participation awards for that one time you joined that one club, and in my case, boxes and boxes of journals, full of childhood dreams, teenage angst, and early 20s apathy. 

And so, Mike and I found ourselves in Chicago, knee deep in nostalgia. My nostalgia, anyway. 

Last time we were here, it was bitterly cold, and his introduction to the windy city was a quick tour of the sights, pointed out from the comfort of the car. It's no surprise he felt kind of blah about my hometown. 

This time, I was determined to show him how awesome it is here. We took the train down to Union Station, and cabbed it to Michigan Avenue. First stop? Mike's favorite store, where he got a souvenir Chicago t-shirt.

This makes the 3rd flagship Burton store we've visited!

Then we did the parks, and the Cloud Gate, also known as the Bean. Seriously. It's on Google maps as "The Bean."

Cloud Gate - a.k.a. "The Bean," by sculptor Anish Kapoor.

And of course we had to visit Buckingham fountain, also famous for being in the opening sequence of the TV show, "Married With Children."

On Saturday, my mom treated my sister, Mike, and I, to massages. We had lunch at Bob Chinn's Crab House, and Mike also got to cruise around and bond with my Dad, in his DeLorean. Later that evening, we went to the Phish concert at Northerly Island. To quote Ice Cube, "I gotta say, today was a good day. "

From Mike's FB. I forgot to take a pic of him in the car!
Phish playing on the right, in purple/pink, with Chicago in the background.

After the concert, at the harbor

While we were taking the water taxi back, Navy Pier's fireworks were going off!

On the way home, we passed a White Castle. Mike had never been to one and wanted to go, so I reluctantly turned into the drive through...

"Just order me whatever I should get."

One bite into a slider with cheese, and Mike's like, "what IS this? Is this meat?"

"It's steamed meat."

"Steamed meat?"

"That's how they do it, that's their thing!"

"This is disgusting! Why didn't you warn me?!"

"Why do you think I didn't order anything for myself?"

And thus ended his White Castle experience, never to be repeated again.

On our last day, I got to catch up with lots of family friends that I grew up with, who all have their own kids now. Although I feel exactly the same, I guess I am getting older! It sort of sneaks up on you. 

I'm the third from the left, in between my sister and brother. Pic by Bill Kwan.

To top off our awesome week, my Dad decided his van would like Oregon. So we skipped out on our flight home, loaded up my childhood belongings, and we're on the road back to Bend with the newest member of our camping fleet! I would like to introduce you to: Big Willy. Road trip post coming up next!

Mike and I, about to hit the road in Big Willy! Pic by Bill Kwan.