Thursday, March 24, 2011

Oh, Chicago!

Chicago, Illinois
(Dec. 13-14, 2010)

our trip started with an about 15 minute walk from the house towards the train station. it was about 6am and still dark and cold and snowy everywhere. i pretty much enjoyed the sights around me while trying hard not to slip and fall.
Amtrak was a bit delayed and took us almost 4 hours from West Lafayette to Chicago. but I couldn't sleep the entire time because i was excited.

the sun was shining brightly in Chicago when we arrived. we went to Chinatown after checking in at the hotel and had brunch/merienda. ee walked around and looked for cheap souvenirs but couldn't find any so we proceeded to Adler Planetarium which offered free entrance fees just for that day (Tuesday). ;)

temperature dropped later that day when we got to the Millennium Park. the scenery was breathtaking but it was just so darn cold and the biting crisp breeze didn't help much at all. one of the main attractions there was the "cloud gate" also known as "the bean" because of it's bean-like shape. it is made of stainless steel and has a polished exterior you could very well see your reflection in the surface.

moving around Chicago is fairly easy with their reliable and efficient transport system. a one day ride all you can ticket is priced at 5 USD. you can use this for all train lines including buses around the metro. and unlike New York subways, most of the stations are above ground albeit a bit rustic and classic-looking too.

Day 2 found us starting out early again to check out more parks and museums. We first went to Shedd Aquarium. I love aquariums and i really wanted to add this in the aquariums of the world that I have been to. It was indeed huge and i marveled at the many more sea creatures we saw there including some piranhas and beluga whales and otters. We also saw Polar Express on 4D.

From the aquarium we went to the nearby Fields Museum which again offered free entrance fees for that day. I'm not much of a fan of museums and ancient artifacts, i find it stuffy and a bit stifling i'd sometimes find it hard to breath when i'm around them. It still amazes me somehow that at least we still get to see and know about them.

Late lunch consisted of spaghetti and deep dish pizza from the famous Giordano's, at least I felt the experience more complete having trying out Chicago's famous pizza.

We set out for one last yet hurried walk around the city up to the river for more sightseeing and photo taking. I say hurried because it was so darn cold and my left knee started cracking and aching i could barely walk!

Anyway, we finally headed to the Union Station to catch our 545PM train back to West Lafayette.

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