Come on, feel the Illinoise!

Happy Sunday, dear readers. How has your weekend been? Mine has been glorious. My brothers came for a visit, which of course meant a day downtown. A day in Chicago gets me excited every time. It doesn’t matter if I’m walking the same beaten path to the Art Institute or the Shedd Aquarium or Wrigley Field, I love it. The possibilities are endless.
We planned to spend the afternoon at the Shedd, but to our surprise and dismay, the general admission price has nearly doubled since we visited two years ago. Not exactly in the budget yesterday, so instead we wandered along the lake shore to Navy Pier. It turned out to be a beautiful warm day, perfect for walking and admiring the glittering architecture, the brilliant blue water, the pedestrians and their pets, the brave little sailboats, the trees with their arms reached to the sky waiting to be twinged with green any day now. Sometimes, wandering in the sunshine is just as enjoyable as wandering a museum, except it’s free [always a plus in my book.]
Later we ate at Gino’s East, meandered down Michigan Avenue, and visited the Skydeck at Sears [Willis] Tower. Traveler’s tip: go to the Skydeck at dusk or after dark. The wait is much shorter, not to mention how positively romantic it is to see a million city lights twinkling endlessly in the dark.
As I looked out on the teaming city streets and twinkling lights, I felt that gut instinct again –  This is where I belong.
I feel blessed to live in a hub of art and culture and intellect and opportunity. Living here feeds my constant hunger for learning and exploring new things, whether it’s a new restaurant or a museum exhibit or meeting someone new that shares my interests in writing and art and music.
Chicago, every time I visit you I love you more than before.  
by Sufjan Stevens
“you came to take us
all things go, all things go
to recreate us
all things grow, all things grow
we had our mind set
all things know, all things know
you had to find it
all things go, all things go…”