Day Five: Chicago (Navy Pier and Sears Tower)

Chicago Travel Blog

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                Today started out around ten or so, maybe a bit earlier. I didn’t look at a clock when I woke up. I mostly just rolled out of bed and got into the shower. I wish I could use the whirlpool tub that we have, but due to womanly issues I can’t. Sigh…sometimes I hate being a woman…sometimes.

                After the shower we all headed down to get breakfast; which was quite yummy if I do say so myself. Our trip into the city began soon after breakfast. We walked to Navy Pier, which to get to we walked along Lake Michigan. It was a very nice walk along the water; I don’t think I’ve seen water so clear close up. I can now say I have stuck my feet into two of the largest lakes in the US. Go me. This lake was much colder then Erie.

                The Pier is kind of like the Boardwalk along a big beach, but different. We took an architectural tour along the Chicago River, through the city. It was very nice and quite informative. Dad left his camera back at the hotel room and the batteries in Lena’s died, so dad and I had to share my camera. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. But despite sharing a camera the tour was very pleasant and with the Go Cards we had it was free. Free is always good.

                There was a shopping area mall type thing along the pier that held a lot of restraints and the IMAX Theater.  We ate lunch at American Hotdogs, which was quite yummy. They have a hotdog for all the really awesome states. Each hotdog modeling what each state normally puts on their dogs. Good food at a good price.

We went to see Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince in the IMAX Theater along the pier. The first fifteen minutes were in 3D, which was pretty cool. Everyone but my brother had yet to see the movie, and I wasn’t disappointed. Granted if I re-read the book I would find plenty wrong with the movie, but that’s just how I am. The books are always better then the movies.

After the movie we took a water taxi to Sears Tower, which is now known as Willis Tower.  This past year the Willis law firm bought a good portion of the building and with their lease came the privilege of re-naming the building. Its many new nicknames include the “What Ya Talking Bout Willis” Tower. I was very amused. It’s the tallest building in Chicago and used to be the tallest building in the world. It’s taller than the Empire State building and has 103 floors. At the top floor is called the “Sky Walk” which is surrounded by glass windows where you can look out and see across the entire city. On really clear days you can see into Wisconsin, Indiana, and across Illinois. There are also things called “The Ledge” which are retractable glass boxes where you can step out above the city surrounded by glass. It’s not really for those afraid of heights. But I thought it was awesome. Before we left I bought a postcard and a t-shirt.  I may be going home a poor women before the end of this trip.

We grabbed a cap to go grab some dinner since by the time we got finished at the Tower it was close to seven o’clock. My brother had heard about this place called Gino’s East and it was amazing. The line to get in was about 45 min long, but the wait was worth it. The entire inside is covered in the signatures of previous guests. They encourage you to write all over the walls of the restaurant. Not to mention that their deep dish pizza is amazing. Again the wait is a long one at about an hour for the pizza to cook but it is so worth it. We all came back to the hotel quite stuffed.

                After a quick trip up to take a look at the sundeck of our hotel we returned to settle in for the night. Tomorrow shall be filled with the Aquarium, The Field Museum, and the Planetarium. I can’t wait!

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photo by: mahoney