A Girl Should Be Two Things: Classy & Fabulous. - Coco Chanel


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My Kind of Town

Chicago is, my kind of town...

The first weekend in November, I flew out to Chicago to meet up with my good friend from my Rivera days (about 6 years ago) Kelli. I had not seen her in a few years (since she moved out to DC) so I was very excited to see her and spend time with her exploring a new city (we both had never been before). We got to spend the whole weekend catching up on each other's lives and reminisce about the Riv days that we loved so much and talked about where everyone is now. It was so fun.
Our trip was very relaxing. We got a nice hotel that was close enough to the airport that we got a free shuttle ride there and back. It was also right next to a Subway stop, so we could get to the city very easily as well. We slept in every day and took our time getting ready and many nights we would come home around 7 or 8 and would just relax in our hotel room and go to bed early. It was SO nice. I also feel like even though we were not on a tight schedule, we saw the city. I think we did all the major things there are to do in Chicago. By the end, we pretty much felt like locals. We had the city down.

These are just a few highlights from our trip.

Every morning, I would stop at a Starbucks to get a hot chocolate and pumpkin scone for breakfast and then we would get on the subway for our half hour commute to downtown.

We walked around town trying to get familiar and see what we wanted to do. We went shopping at "The Magnificent Mile" where I found myself a very cute coat. It was awesome weather for us while we were there. Sunny the whole time. Perfect fall weather and colors, but the first day was a little chilly and I didn't bring a coat. Silly me. ha ha.

We then headed over to the Hancock Building, which is the second tallest in Chicago. We wanted to check out the view, so we went to the lounge at the very top and had some drinks and enjoyed the view. They had a pretty amazing view in the bathroom actually.

Next, we had to go try out Chicago's much talked about deep dish pizza. Uno's was recommended to me by a friend. Must be good because we had to wait an hour for our pizza's. It was a fun place with good food.

Then we had to hit up Willis Tower (aka Sears Tower) and check out the view of the city from the tallest building in the Northern Hemisphere! I am not going to lie to you... it was kind of scary for me. They even have these clear cases that stick off of the building that you can stand in so it looks like you are just hanging 110 stories in the air. It took a little courage for me to step out in that case... but I did it. It was quite a site!
*It is kind of hard to see in the picture, but the darker picture is of our shoes while we were in the clear case... so you can see the city WAY below us... looks like we are standing in the air*

The next day we went to the Museum (The Art Institute of Chicago) and walked through most of the exhibits. Then we took a visit to the bean! Which is very fun for pictures..... as you can see.....

The city is full of beautiful and unique architecture. What better way to learn about it then to go on an Architecture Boat tour, which we did. It happened to be my favorite thing that we did the whole trip. It was beautiful and educational.

Another recommended restaurant from my friend from Chicago was Ed Debevics. So we went. Boy was THAT entertaining! ha ha. They make you wear the hats, the are loud and rude on purpose and the waiters dance on the counter. The food was pretty good too. Funniest part was my hamburger came to me on a hot dog bun. It was all funny. How nice for them that they get paid to be rude and loud.

Next day we decided to venture to a different part of Chicago. So we took the train and went to the Frank Lloyd Wrights house for a tour. Across the street from that was the University of Chicago. Beautiful campus... especially a sight to see in the fall. We LOVED it. It is what I picture a university to look like... like what you see in the movies!

We then we to see the Museum of Science and Industry, which is a BEAUTIFUL building. I wish we had the time and energy to have gone inside. We ended up taking the train back to downtown and ended up eating at some weird random place and then had the whole drama getting home that pretty much took up the rest of our night. Oh well. It was all very funny in the end.

Overall, the trip was fantastic. I loved Chicago! It was a very fun and classy city. So glad I was able to go, I love to explore new cities. Really glad I was able to go with Kelli. Not only was it good to see her again and catch up on life, but she is also an amazing travel companion. She was easy going and fun and  we had a great time just the two of us. I would travel with this girl anywhere in a heartbeat. Thank you Kelli for an amazing trip!


Kel said...

you summarized that really well Trace, and I like your photo montages of all the different places we went. my gosh, I still can't believe how we lucked out with the weather.

good, good times!

Kel said...

btw: you should model for Starbucks. that first pic of you in the subway w/ your hot chocolate. hot.

Karen Ella said...

Someday I will be as cool as you and travel everywhere...

Erin Masi said...

I love Chicago!! Looks like you had a great trip!!

A2 said...

Aww...you ladies are a blast. Glad you got to catch up! I'm missing me some Riv friends :)

Lori said...

Tracy, how is it that you do big cities coming from Goleta?!? HaHa, good for you, looks like a great and very beautiful trip. Love you

jamie hixon said...

What?? That pizza looks amazing.
WHAT?? I would never step into that clear box way above the air.
What?? That "Go away" note made me laugh. As did the hot dog bun burger. Classic!
What?? We have a Frank Lloyd Wright street here in the Phoenix area. I would love to see his house.
What?? I'm so jealous. I wanna go to Chicago.

Fowl Ideas said...

This is where the "next blog" button brought me.

The silver sphere reminds me of a prop used in a series of science fiction stories by Larry Niven.

Very nice photographs. I must be off to the "next blog."

rachel v. said...

goodness me. You travel so much! It is fantastic! I like to think I can live vicariously through you :) I am glad you had fun, I would love to visit Chicago some day

Kayleigh said...

I love all your trips... And when I say love, I mean I am so jealous!

I think the pic of you w/the hot chocolate is great! It really does look like an ad or something. :]