Trinity chilling out on the Hiawatha
One Friday last October, we stowed away on a train and ended up in Chicago
. Or bought an Amtrak ticket on the internet using a 10% off code, however you prefer to look at it. We were originally supposed to go to New York, but the flights were oversold, and we had to go to some of the Chicagoween festivities. Weather irony continues to torment me. The weather was basically fabulous every single day that week, except the day we didn't want to carry around extra jackets and umbrellas, but had to anyway. It was kind of cold and windy, but we managed to avoid the on and off rain entirely by being inside whenever it would rain. I was pretty much in bliss over the entire day trip: how GREAT is it to take a train instead of a plane? It was such an incredible load off my mind not to have to worry about a dress code, nor of any possiblity of being bumped, but still end up in another city that is not the one I live in.
Check me out, traveling in jeans. It's cause I'm on a train y'all! (My airline has a business casual dress code for non-revs)
Since the train station is near the airport, and the only way there is to go to the airport and take a shuttle, my appreciation was enhanced. No lengthy weather delays, no security checkpoints, no putting my under 3.5 oz. containers into a resealable bag. I am so not looking forward to the day someone blows up a train.
We arrived in Chicago and immediately headed for Daley Plaza to see a free show by Midnight Circus for one reason, to see a real live superhero! Oh my god, I realize I do a lot of dorky/idiotic things, but this one may top them all. Trinity and I LOVE the television show Who Wants to Be a Superhero? We have seen every episode ever and it's honestly the only show we can say that about. Our all time favorite superhero is Hyper-Strike, who was the runner-up on season 2 (for what reason I still can't grasp.
Chicago loves dyeing water various colors to celebrate holidays
The Defuser was not exactly a stupid superhero, but Hyper-Strike could do flips and stuff, he had a hyperblast he could create with his chi, while The Defuser's thing was that he was strong (big deal!). Whip Snap and Parthenon who were the last two elimated before the finals were both better than him. Plus Hyper-Strike and Feedback who was last year's winner would have been the best duo ever, hello?! wtf is Stan Lee thinking!) MOVING ON, we had inside information (which may or may not have been a MySpace bulletin he posted. My god, this just gets dorkier by the minute, doesn't it?) that said Hyper-Strike was going to be in the circus. There were lots of ghostly characters walking around the plaza, but we didn't see Hyper-Strike. Then, just as the show started, we saw him standing behind the stage area, right where we just walked away from! Out there, right amongst the commonfolk! He had on white ghost make-up, so we had a small conversation that went like "he's right there!, no, that's not him, is it him?, yes it is him, I can tell by his hair, no, I don't think it is, OMG, it is him.
This is a.. thing... in Chicago that kids (and me) climb up and slide down. And it really is as fun as it looks.
" Whatever, we totally made eye contact. In the show, he played a ninja, so he had most of his face covered, which is probably a disguise so that villains won't recognize him and stuff. But Trinity and I totally knew it was him, you could tell by his eyes and by the way he did flips. After the show, he took pictures with people, who were mostly schoolchildren who thought they were taking pictures with some random ninja, but we knew better. However, Trinity chickened out and wouldn't pose with him, and I didn't want to expose him by talking to him and/or I was too shy. Idiot!
At some point we had discovered that the Sears Tower is a block away from Union Station. I couldn't tell you how many times I've been to Chicago (otherwise I'd have to kill you), and I can't tell you how many times I've been to Union Station (actually I can, four).
Midnight Circus performs at Chicagoween
In any case, there it was, so we climbed up it like Spiderman. More accurately, we went inside and bought a ticket. Here's a summary. The Stratosphere, Las Vegas. The Washington Monument, Washington DC. The Prudential Building, Boston. The Space Needle, Seattle. The Arch, St. Louis. The Sears Tower, Chicago. All really tall buildings that tower over the cities they reside in, all places I've been to. All the single most BORING place I've ever been in said cities. I mean, really: who cares? I've seen the ground from airplanes and it's not a big deal. These buildings are okay for recognizing some other place in a city that you couldn't find, kind of like this other invention called a MAP. A map that is free on the internet, or by checking out a book at the library.
Trinity conquered the Sears Tower
It was actually pouring rain while we were at the top of the Sears tower, and that was pretty cool, thanks to Mother Nature, not some boring architect. The Sears Tower was good for one thing, to regroup and look at the book I had in my bag, to see if the pizza restaurant across the street was recommended. It was safe inside to act like a tourist, since everyone else was. I don't exactly think of myself as a tourist in Chicago, but I don't exactly want to identify myself as a local either. Actually, I don't know what's worse: someone thinking I'm a local, or someone thinking I took a vacation to Chicago. I don't exactly want to be seen as either of those things. However, I love Chicago and I'm glad it's far enough from me that I don't live there, but close enough that I can go there to do stuff, but still sleep in my own bed that night.