|The "Bean" or Cloud Gate|
From walking around the Loop to Millenium Park & geocaching at the Cloud Gate to a somewhat chilly boat tour of the Chicago River to Lake Michigan--it was jam-packed! Even more was a great time spent with my sister, her husband, & my niece.
Saturday it was time to explore the city--Xing Fu & I booked a boat tour & had a couple hours to kill before it so we took a walk over to Millenium Park & spent a good bit of time playing with the bean or Cloud Gate. We even geocached there--a virtual geocache where we had to take our pictures reflected in the bean & post on the web site--
Next, off to our boat tour--a bit nippy 'cuz it is the tail-end of October--looked at the cool architecture of the city, learned about how an engineering feat created the Chicago River to flow backwards & keep Lake Michigan clean.
And then, walking over to meet my sis & BIL for dinner at a very yummy Frontera Grill. The Mole--OMG, the mole....I can only hope that the next time I decide to make mole that I can even get that close...and then...we drive over to The Aviary. I so wish that there was something like it here, but no such luck--Molecular Gastronomy for your drinks! First we were invited downstairs to the very selective Office--you get your own key to open the door--the vibe inside was distinctively speakeasy--dark corners & heavy furniture. We watched the bartender (you really can't call him that--more like a drink artist--REALLY!) mix our drinks--mine had infusions of herbs & spices with a tonka bean as a swizzle stick. The ice was a chipped ice ball--beautifully reflecting the drink around it--so cool. Upstairs in The Aviary, I had a drink called the Oolong--infusions again but it happens as pear brandy is heated & forced up a tube to swirl around with all kinds of herbs & fruit--served in a mini tea cup--steaming...so cool.
Sunday was no less busy--slept in & then went to the Bongo Room for brunch--great stuff there too--we kicked around my sister's old neighborhood Buck Town & also Wicker Park--spent some time hanging with my niece--I think she was far more entertained by Xing Fu...I'm just not used to girls--I'm soooo a boy mom....anyhoo, I digress. Finally, my BIL cooked an amazing dinner--very nice way to end the visit.
Up at 3:30 AM on Monday morning just sucked--we almost were able to get a $400 voucher for giving up our seats for a later flight at 8:45 but the folks never checked in for the flight so we winged away as planned--6:15 AM. It would have been so worth it too--mebbe not so much fun hanging at O'Hare, but we'd have found stuff to do & made money by just waiting around. AH, well...better luck next time. And then I went to work---I haven't stopped until now which is why this is the first I've been able to write. More to come--