Vaccication (*)

May 19, 2021

(*) The vacation you take after you’re vaccinated (I wish I came up with this, but I did not.)


First flight in 15 months.

Y’all? This is a good day. It even felt glorious (and so familiar) to stand in that stupid Peet’s line:

No fights on our plane, just cooperative masked folks (hard to be sneaky). Masks, but no distancing.

I was even excited to be test driving my new pink canvas backpack that Staci made for me. Everything about traveling seemed fun.. even cramped seats, no legroom, masks (cold stares)….

Okay, enough about that. This was about seeing Peter for the first time since July 27, 2020.

We landed a little early (like about 1:00ish), we got our bags, headed outside, got a call from Peter that he was in jammed traffic entering the airport… but he swept in to the United passenger pickup zone, we climbed in and hit the I-90 bound for downtown Chicago and the Acme Hotel on Ohio.

And it was just great to see that boy.

We checked in, stashed the car for the next three days , dumped our bags, and headed out to see Chicago.. Peter leading the way. We walked and sightsaw for hours.

Here are some first day Chicago shots:

We walked east on Ohio, crossed Michigan Ave, walked along Lakeshore…

Stopped here along Lake Michigan for a (crazy expensive) repast (a place called Cafe Michelle)… I think Jim said it was $100 for a couple glasses of wine, three sandwiches and some hot shishito peppers. It’s worth noting the QR code on the table. Not common in Davis, but used, it seems, everywhere else. I think it started as a Covid thing (avoiding paper menus), but may remain forever. We got extremely used to them on this trip for everything.

… continued along Lakeshore, then cut up by a dried-up (for now) Buckingham Fountain and into Grant park and Millennium Park… and took all that in.

A walled-off Bean (Cloud Gate)… you don’t see such an empty plaza, normally:

The Lurie botanical gardens, by the Art Institute. You can see the top of the Frank Gehry-designed Pritzker bandshell and bunches of buildings I can’t identify.

More interesting buildings and gardens:

Wandering through the botanical garden, looking west.. that is possibly the Willis Tower in the background, the one with all the antennas. For almost twenty five years, it was the tallest building in the world, until 1998.. but now it’s not even in the top 20. Used to be the Sears Tower (when I went to the top, long ago).

This is a cool pedestrian bridge that goes from Millennium Park to that newish Maggie Daley park..

Then we ambled up to the River Walk, along the Chicago River.. which is so scenic. This is the Michigan Avenue bridge and in the background the Wrigley Building, whose clock tower I cut off.

I’ve followed these two through some wonderful cities in the world… I’m not sure how much they see.. they’re always talking through some math problem (or something).

We stopped for more refreshment… cocktails (and iced tea) along the river at the Chicago Brewhouse, adjacent to the Vietnam Veteran’s Fountain. So happy!!

A few of Peter:

This is a shot looking back at the brewhouse (on right), after crossing the bridge at State St. I had to blur the name on the tower on the left.. a true eyesore on the Chicago skyline. I’m surprised the City allows it. And now you can see the clock tower on the Wrigley Building. Also note the color of the water.. truly teal.

We started back to our place at this point… to hang out a little in the hotel before going back out for dinner. Passed a cool sculpture on the way… probably along State Street, north of the river.

Here are a couple shots of our room at the Acme… it’s got kind of a seedy-chic, arty, kitschy vibe…

We got a suite, so this is our sitting room:

This is the view out the window (ninth floor) into the light well…

Funny, huh?

Jim picked some great restaurants this visit… this was first-night dinner, late, at an Italian place called Quartino, just a couple blocks away. Sat on the second-floor balcony on busy State St, enjoying the Wednesday night action and some wonderful food. Casual, Italian tapas-style. Really enjoyed it. J&P are studying the menu… via QR code.

(Here’s a shot of the restaurant that I took the following day:)

And that’s a wrap on day one.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: