Thursday, January 20, 2011


The first day of my trip!

I've been here once before. Came to visit with Carol on the train.

But today, I'm just passin' through. Here's an excerpt from that December 2009 trip:

Mzuri's report
Brutally cold on Thursday!

Nevertheless, we sashayed out of the hotel and decided to turn left instead of the usual right, then got on a bus whose driver said, yes, she goes to the Chicago Cultural Center, only to take us out to east jesus by the Chicago History Museum. Wow, was it cold! We blew into the history museum and asked how to get to the Chicago Cultural Center (hereafter referred to as CCC), and the guy suggested that perhaps we'd just like to take a look around his museum. When I demurred, he gave me directions to the CCC, then asked, "why do you want to go there, anyway?"

Carol ventured the same question, to which I snarled "because it's a must-see for me."

So we entered out into the cold again, and lurched, shivering, for about a block (as it turns out we were practically on the lake), and got on the right bus.

Did I say how cold it was?

The CCC is the former Chicago Public Library. It has an immense decorative dome with a gigantic Tiffany chandelier. Or maybe the entire dome is Tiffany; I don't know. But it's beautiful. The CCC has musical, dance, or dramatic performances daily. There are art exhibits on several floors. There is also a visitor center. Carol, obviously nursing some kind of grudge, pronounced it "barn-like" as we left.

After the CCC, we walked three blocks to Daly Plaza (site of the Picasso sculpture). The kristkindlmarket is there this time of year, so it's filled with German vendors and wares. This includes the bratwurst and potato pancakes we enjoyed for lunch. We ate same in the Timber House, which is sort of like a beer hall. Picnic tables. Pretty well heated.

Our next destination was the Art Institute, a cavernous ("barn-like") building that housed, you know, like, art. We split up and joined together a couple of times as we perused the stock. Carol was most taken with the impressionists, particularly Monet's six versions of haystacks. She had just remarked earlier that day how she loved when an artist repeated a piece over and over and over again. 

Sated with culture, we returned to our hotel. Later, we went downstairs for dinner at the little Italian place. Carol enjoyed a Manhattan and I warmed up with a cup of coffee.


As a Lady of a Certain Age times two I think I did extremely well - each of three days walking without complaint for miles before I slept.  Generally we forged out each morning around 9 AM, took numerous buses and a few memorable times the subway, walked briskly (me tottering gamely after the Guide) and both up and down many, many steps into the wonderful world of the tourist.  As the Guide once proclaimed "when a person is in an unfamiliar setting the brain turns to mush" very apt since at every bus that opened it's doors for passengers who knew where they were going
She would dart forward and ask the driver how to get to where she wanted to go...I held back and tried to look  like a knowledgeable native. 

The el

Microscopic creature from Natural History Museum

View from Hancock Building

In the Chicago Cultural Center

Carol perusing art in the Chicago Cultural Center

A fine example of art from the Chicago Art Institute

 This is a scheduled post, written prior to 1/21.

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