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Alana’s Travel Diary

Tuesday, 10 Apr 2012

Location: Chicago, USA

Hated Hooters last night - sardined into a seat at the bar whilst waiting for a table. Busy, noisy & very unfriendly - oh yeah - maybe that's cos I'm female !! Had a beer & left without eating cos couldn't face anything fried after watching a ton of chicken wings being tossed into bubbling fryers. Somehow didn't feel very hungry after that.
Promised myself a relatively relaxing day today - exploratory journey to Old Town to check out some of the architecture. Had the rail connections all sussed & looked an easy walk on the map in order to see some of the houses where the originals were razed in the Chicago Fire but reconstructed in the same style as part of gentrifying the area. Also guidebook promised lots of small & unusual shops.
Earwigged on a fascinating conversation between two musicians – juxtaposition of young & old with the declared 29 year old white blues guitarist (working at Buddy Guy’s) shaking his head & not recognising much of the musical reminiscing of the older black guy who was into rock music. Desperately wanted to join in (I am that old !!) & demand to be taken to Buddy Guy’s as a guest that evening – bottled out !! Respect though to the younger guy’s claim to fame – “I was at Buddy Guy’s house for Thanksgiving last year”.
Got off at the right stop & walked miles – saw architecture – shops seemed closed & took me ages to find anywhere for coffee & breakfast. Upside of all of this – fitter due to loads of walking instead of driving a computer at a desk most of the day. Thank goodness for Starbucks within supermarkets !!
Lunch next (well my main meal of the day really due to dearth of choice around my hotel) – had checked out Chicago’s “finest & oldest pizza joint” & rode the Brown Line round the Loop to get to it. Can’t get over the voyeuristic delight of peering through windows on the elevated line & feeling sorry for that dentist’s patient , lawyer’s clients, worried looking individuals in suits in conference rooms & tons of nondescript people glued to computer screens. Lunch a disappointment despite the forewarned wait of 35 mins due to everything being made fresh to order. I can usually take cooked tomato (allergic to fresh) but this was overladen & tasted decidedly acidic & a strange kind of “deep pan”. Stomach reacted badly not much later & have decided that Pizza Hut has moulded my taste buds lol. Maybe I’ll seek out a chop house or spaghetti joint tomorrow. Definitely decided to check out Chicago Zoo as the City Fathers have benevolently kept it free of charge. Can’t quite suss out how to get there yet so will have to go on line & sort.

Achievements for today:
** Grandkids order for Disney Store “Princess” gear
** Daughter’s request for a Disney cover for her 4S
** Order for American chocolate / Hershey bars / Baby Ruth’s