From there we took the super shady bus and El back to Roosevelt and got on Bus 22 to Cemark/Chinatown. We had the best egg rolls and beef with Chinese vegetables at Three Happiness.
That night we went to the White Sox game and watched them beat the NY Mets in an exciting game. It was my first major league sporting event. We sat next to a really friendly guy from Chicago who informed us that the Mets offered the better fan experience over the Cubs. We both loved the Chicago dressed Vienna hot dog, nachos, vodka lemonade and beer.
Wednesday, June 26
We spent Wednesday morning on the Magnificent Mile and it was truly magnificent! We, or really I, shopped at Nordstroms Rack, Crate & Barrel and Forever 21. I think my receipt from Forever 21 will be inside by birthday card:)
Ryan at Nordstrom's Rack. Such a good sport!
This El sign was appropriate.
We had lunch at Graham Elliot's Grahamwich - ranked to have one of the top five grilled cheese sandwiches by Food & Wine magazine. Can you guess what I ordered? I loved the light fixtures - and everything else - about the shop!
After a little more shopping we had drinks at The Purple Pig. Ryan had the Scotland Belhaven "black" Scottish stout. From there, we caught the water taxi from under the Trump Tower at Michigan to Clark. We walked through Old Town and the Lincoln Park Zoo - one of the country's last free zoos.
I think our longest walk of the trip was from the zoo to our hotel on Diversey in Lakeview. But we enjoyed seeing the Lincoln Park area and being in our neighborhood around the time people were getting off work. We felt like true "Chicagoans." There was a Trader Joes across the street from our hotel so we had wine and cheese before leaving for Second City.
The improve show at Second City was another of our favorite things! Alums of the theatre include Tina Fey, Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert. We laughed for a solid hour and then went back later that night to watch a training session.
After the show we ate at O'Briens in Old Town on North Wells and split crab cakes and a Louis Burger with baked mac & cheese.
Thursday, June 27
We squeezed a lot into our last day! We took the brown El line to Washington and Wells and got on Bus 60 at Madison and Wells to Little Italy. Such a neat neighborhood. We saw the two big churches and got a pomegranate Italian ice at Mario's.
From there we took the blue line to LaSalle and walked to Grant's Park.
Buckingham Fountain in Grant's Park - designed after a fountain at Versailles. This was the only day that was really pretty and sunny. We got hot walking around!
Next up was the Art Institute to see American Gothic and the special exhibit "Passion for Fashion: A museum-wide celebration of style inspired by Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity."
The exhibit itself is worth a trip to the Windy City. No photos allowed of the exhibit but it was wonderful. It looked at the relationship between art and fashion from the mid-1860s to the mid-1880s and if the Impressionists were fasionistas and the role fashion played in their attempt to paint modern life. On display were dresses and accessories from the time period that matched what was shown in the paintings. I loved this quote about corsets:
"A woman in a corset is a lie, a falsehood, a fiction, but for us this fiction is better than the reality." Eugene Chapus, Manuel de l'homme et de la femme comme il faut, 1855
Afterwards we took the water taxi one more time from Adams Street at Union Station to Navy Pier where we ate lunch at Capi's and split the baked penne with sausage.
We made it back to our hotel with two minutes to spare to not be charged for an extra day of parking. Actually, Ryan made it back - he sprinted the three blocks from the El to the Days Inn. He was not going to pay another $22/day to park!
We drove about an hour southeast of Chicago to the Indiana Dunes. Such a beautiful view of Lake Michigan. There was a short hike to Mount Baldy - a 123 foot sand dune.
After the 1933 World Fair in Chicago, several of the houses of the future exhibit were moved to this state park. To me, this looks like something from the 50s - but I guess the architects knew what was coming! This is the Florida house:
We decided to start driving south and see how far we could get. It was the perfect time of day to enjoy the heartland and we took the long way back to the interstate. We stopped in Watseka and ate Steak 'n Shake. I'm sure we were their first Mississippi visitors!
We made it to Mt. Vernon, Ill and spent the night in a cheap hotel. We got up early and stopped in Senatobia for lunch with Net and to get the dogs from Mom and Dad. It's nice to be away but I'm so thankful to be home! Ryan is working today and starts M4 on Monday. We are finally in the home stretch of med school!