February 15th, 2008 – by: LMTaylor
So, Chicago is pretty cool.
Wednesday we went exploring. We got the free bus from our hotel up to Navy Pier and wandered around. The pier had lots of shops and eating establishments, as well as the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co and the largest stained glass collection anywhere! It was pretty unusual!
We then took a walk through Downtown, its very busy, much more so than anywhere we visited in Canada.
There are high rises everywhere, the sun has a hard time penetrating through to the streets and the 'L', the elevated train roars overhead. We walked up the magnificent mile and did a bit of window shopping, going right upto the John Hancock Building which has a Cheesecake Factory at the base! Rachel was really wanting to try the famous Chocago deep dish pizzas so for dinner we went to Pizza uno, and ordered an individual pizza each. The waitress, who looked like she had been around since time began asked for our name, our blank expression must have been obvious becase she explained that the locals phone their orders in advance because each pizza is made from scratch and takes 45 mins to cook. We didnt mind waiting and it was worth it, our pizza was huge and very tasty!
Yesterday we took a walk through Millenium park and stood transfixed by 'The Bean'.
Its a huge cylindrical sculpture that is highly reflective. As soon as I saw it I instantly thought of the space ship from flight of the navigator, when it is first captured by NASA and they are trying to get inside it. It looks SO like it! You can walk underneath it and when you look up you can see your reflection in so many different points that it disorientates you. This thing is seriously cool, the skyline is reflected in it from every angle.
Today we moved from our very nice hotel room by Grant Park to a.......quirky.. hostel by Lincoln Park. We have a private room so we dont have to deal with dorm mates but the whole place smells a bit funky and the kitchen has a lot of room for improvement! We decided to take a walk through the park and we had barely stepped onto the snow covered grass before we had made a whole heap of new friends.
One of our new friends
Squirrels, first one, then half a dozen, all came scampering up. We of course couldnt resist, we sat on the nearest bench and pulled out the packet of peanuts we happened to have and started being friendly. The side effect was the huge group of Canadian geese than were on the pond nearby flocked over to cadge a free meal too. We spent some time feeding the squirrels before moving on, only to find that our new furry friends followed us! Some were sneaky about it, runnng through the tree branches to keep up but most were too eager for more peanuts and scampered along the snow behind us. We did stop once more to give them a reward for being so nice then moved on, only to stop dead a few paces on to stare in wonder at the pair of hares that were trying to blend into the bushes next to the path. They were so cute, tiny and fluffy against the white of the snow.
All in all a good day.