Cloud Gates, "The Bean"
Chicago, March 2010
Chicago is an amazing city filled with beautiful architecture that juxtaposes modern with classic styles. I had the opportunity to spend a few days here in between jobs and I was able to visit my family and spend a day in the city by myself.
I started the day with taking the express train into Chicago and because it was a Friday, I was surrounded by commuters. People greeted one another and discussed the weather, sports and commented on how late the train was. Others pulled out their newspapers or plugged in their earphones and immersed themselves as we went along.
When we arrived in the city, I followed the crowd off the train and through the station. Once I was outside, my first stop was the Museum of Contemporary Photography.
As I walked down the blocks, I took in all the sights and sounds. It felt amazing to be back in a city. Moving from the urban area of San Jose and into Orange County has been a rhythmic change for me. San Jose isn't bustling like our neighboring city, San Francisco, but it definitely has its own pace. I've learned to slow down a bit more while living in OC, but I miss the quick pace and energy of the city.
So as I walked down the streets, I could feel a different energy flowing through me as I moved from one block to the next.
The museum was small, but I the exhibit was about contemporary photography done with film, a fact that I was extremely supportive about.
After the photography museum, I decided to visit the Chicago Art Institute. While walking to the Institute, I looked up at one of the buildings and noticed that there was a used book store on the second floor. After making my way to the store, I tucked myself into a corner and enjoyed the sunlight coming through the dusty windows. I have always liked bookstores of all kinds, and used bookstores have a musty smell that provides me the same comfort as libraries had when I was younger.
When I finally made it to the Art Institute, I checked in my bags and began my journey. This was one of the largest museums I have ever seen and it took about three hours to get through. By the time I was done, my cousin was done with school and met with me at "The Bean." We enjoyed some "Chicago style" pizza at a local bar and caught up. That was the first time, as adults, my cousin and I were able to talk and get to know each other as adults. It felt very nice to be able to do that.
The rest of the weekend was spent with the rest of the family with visiting the children museum, playing on the pier with gusty winds and eating Chinese food in Chinatown.
It was an amazing trip, the exact thing I needed to clear my mind before I dove into my job. I seem to always leave a piece of my heart in any big city I go to, and Chicago definitely has a big part of it.