I have a bad (read: excellent) habit of buying plane tickets late at night when I can’t sleep. Late night plane tickets are how I ended up spending a summer in Switzerland, moving to New York City, and wandering around Germany, Austria, and Hungary this past December. It’s also how I found myself in Chicago this past weekend.
Chicago has been on my list for a very long time. It’s where I was born and it’s the city of my second favorite hockey team. So when I saw a $170 roundtrip ticket to Chicago, it was a no-brainer. I easily convinced my friend Caitlin to meet me in Chicago from New York and also reconnected with my friend Max, who lives in Chicago and was happy to play tour guide.
The weather called for rain the entire trip and somehow in very un-midwest weather, it was 70 and sunny the whole weekend. I was euphoric. Despite living in the city of eternal sunshine, spring weather in any other city just feels so much better.
Brunch at Longman & Eagle: Admittedly, Maxwell and I consumed more scotch here than food, but their menu was amazing, the food we did eat was delicious, and their patio was the perfect setting for some good spring weather.
Cubanos at 90 miles: Do you know what goes perfectly with two bottles of champagne? Cuban sandwiches.
Donuts at Do-rite: Freehand, where we stayed, sold these donuts at their coffee shop and man were they delicious. I don’t consider myself a donut person. I will eat them, but they aren’t something I crave. These were so fluffy, light, with just the right amount of glaze and chocolate that I have been craving them since I left.
Lincoln Park Zoo: Is there anything better than a zoo? Well yeah, a wildlife sanctuary or animal reservation, but I love zoos – the humane ones. The Lincoln Park Zoo is one of the oldest in the US and it’s completely free.
North Avenue Beach: I could not get over the color of Lake Michigan. Michigan is trash (looking at you Detroit Red Wings) but man, any lake that is the brightest turquoise you could ever imagine, is a lake that I will love forever.
SkyDeck: Anyone who knows me is familiar with my irrational fear of elevators. I will ride them and keep my mouth shut, but I’m not thrilled about them. The elevator that shoots you up 1,353 feet in 60 seconds at Willis Tower shakes and I hated every second of it. Vertigo aside, we’ve already discussed my love of panoramic views and the Skydeck serves up some of the best in Chicago. Because I was not about to spend $23 without standing on a glass ledge, I silenced the voice in my head that didn’t really trust how safe the glass was. Kidding, I stood on the glass ledge for a full 3 minutes and thought about it shattering and me dying the entire time. I am fun.
The weekend came as a perfect refresh after a few very hectic weeks (or maybe months, what is time?) I have a dear friend moving to Chicago in June and I’m already planning a September visit.