Special thanks to Leontine from Leontine's Book Realm for the super header.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Chicago - My Kind of Town

Made it to Chicago Sunday. My flight was early. Go figure. Weirdest thing ever. Anyway, my friends picked me up at the airport and we did some touristy stuff. We went up in to the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) skydeck and had a look around.

This is that weird brown building in Chicago with the X's on it. I have no clue what it is. But you see it in pictures all the time. And the lake and other buildings. (Mikey told me it's the John Hancock building.)

Just another view of the lake and the downtown area.

Behind the tall apartment buildings is Soldier Field where they play football.

Just some weird triangle building I thought was very cool.

I loved this apartment building shaped like an S.

My feet, standing on glass 103 stories up. Eeep. It was really freaky to take that first step off the floor onto the glass. Your brain is screaming "No don't do it". Once I was out there it was fine.

The view from my hotel room window of the lake. Nice. I can also pretty much watch the TV's of the apartments to the left. I am that close. I should have brought my binoculars, I might have found something interesting.

Looking down there is this nice park near the hotel.

At night it looks even cooler. Beautiful city with all the lights. I imagine from the skydeck it looks amazing.

Part of the Macy's window display. My friends and I were all hyped to get to Macy's and see the "amazing Christmas displays". Umm. Yeah. It's the story of "Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus" but because we started at the wrong end it made no sense till we figured it out half way though. And beside the doll the background are all made out of paper. Interesting concept but to be honest I think my friend John's work puts this stuff to shame. It was average quality at best, I could probably have done some. So it certainly didn't blow me away and I didn't see very many people ooohing and awwwwing over it. Shame that.

Okay, the skeleton was pretty well done, but it's mostly just boxes and rectangles.

Tonight I discovered the all Hello Kitty all the time store. I did not enter. That much pink in one spot could have led to brain hemorrhage.

However I did go in the all Lego store and they had a lots of life sized (and beyond) sculptures in Lego. This was a full sized R2D2. Very cool.

And what's Star Wars without Darth Vader? He was HUGE. Probably at least 7.5 feet tall and all made out of Lego except his cape.

Apparently this giant sculpture has a name but it's referred to as "the bean". It's very cool, all polished metal and with the snow breaking up and sliding down it looked cool. That's very close to the hotel.

And that's about it. It's VERY cold here. Well, it seems cold. It was 10F this morning when I got up. I went shopping after training today and my legs were frozen. But not too much snow. Tomorrow is more training until lunch then I'm going to hit Macy's for a bit and maybe a couple of other shops and then head out to the airport which I hear might be a bitch of a ride during rush hour. I get home around 10:00 so it will be a long day.

I definitely want to come back though, but in summer. My daughter has been bugging me to come to Chicago so maybe this coming summer we'll see if we can swing it. Lots of fun stuff to do and my one friend is the nutritionist in a zoo so we can get a backstage tour which I would love. Hope everyone's having a great week.


Chris said...

You got some amazing pictures!! I think the best Macy's holiday display I saw was the Harry Potter one, based on the books. But it was in Minneapolis. Where you walk through it and are warm instead of being outside. :)

And there's a LEGOland in the Mall of America - they do some very cool stuff!

Mem said...

Great photos! You and my husband apparently have a lot in common -- he loves taking photos of unusual buildings, and the life-sized Star Wars people out of Legos would totally make his day. I don't think I could have stepped out on that glass floor, though. Even seeing the photo gave me the creeps!

Tam said...

That sounds like a cool display Chris. The toy store in NYC, maybe FAO Schwarz has some MASSIVE Lego sculptures. I'm always impressed because I don't visualize in 3-D very well.

Tam said...

Thanks Val. I'm not architect but I do love unusually shaped buildings that just catch my eye. Anything that's not just rectangular or square will always jump out. And really, who doesn't love life sized Star Wars figures made of Lego? :-)

Some people were pretty freaked standing out there and I had a weird feeling taking that first step, but once I was out it wasn't bad, but I didn't want to stand out there for too long, take the picture and get back in. :-0

Kris said...

Weirdness. My dad's xmas pressie arrived just as I opened you post. It's lego AND it's Star Trek. O.o Yeah.

Kris said...

I meant Star WARS. *sigh* I thin I need caffeine.

Kris said...

ThinK. Fuck.

Chris said...

Caffeinate thyself stat, Kris!

Tam said...

LOL I was thinking. Hmm. Star Trek is CLOSE to Star Wars. :-) Is it a giant Darth Vader though? That would be cool, and freaking expensive. :-)

Cecile Smutty Hussy said...

Oh my gosh, thanks for sharing Tam! I will probably never make it there, so this means a lot to me!!! And the glass shot... yeah kinda freaky. My brain was screaming for you to step the hell off too!!!

Hugs to you honey! Hope all is well!!

K. Z. Snow said...

Wonderful pix, Tam, as usual--although that Hello, Kitty store pushed my gag button. Everything looks coated in sugary pink frosting. How can a place like that possibly stay in business? Yech!

Nice view from the hotel room. Did the Canadian government pick up the tab for that? Think I can get a job with them? :)

K. Z. Snow said...

Kris, I found your lost letters on the carpeting under my desk. But it looks like you already found replacements. (Whoops, good thing; the dogs just ate 'em.)

Tam said...

Thanks Cecile. You never know, you might make it here someday. It's a nice city, but if you come, make sure it's in the summer. :-)

Tam said...

The gov't is paying KZ, but we are paying $125 a night. We got some kind of group rate. I'm not sure what the rate would be off the street, too much anyway.

I was quite amazing to see the store devoted entirely to Hello Kitty. And it was pink, very. It was a small store in an upscale mall, but still seems like overkill. Mind you there is a multi-story Barbie store in China somewhere my kid found pictures of. It's also nothing but pink froth. Hard to stomach.

wren boudreau said...

My kind of town, Chicago is... And yes, it is better in the spring and fall than in the winter!

If you go to Water Tower Place, be sure to pop in to Chiaroscuro, a cool store on Level 2. If you're staying down in the Loop, try to see some of the unusual shops on Michigan Ave, if they're still there!

Tam said...

I am right off the loop Wren, right beside the giant bean. Michigan. Was I on Michigan today? I hit the fancy stores on North Michigan (am insanely considering buying my daughter a Coach wallet) and walked State which is Macy's with my friends. Maybe tomorrow I'll go the other way on Michigan.

Jenre said...

Wow, my youngest daughter would have been sooooo excited about the Hello Kitty store, and my son would have loved the Lego store :).

It looks fabulous, Tam. I'd love to visit Chicago one day too.

Tam said...

It's a great city Jen. Lots to see and do for families.

Jordan Castillo Price said...

I'm sorry I couldn't make it down to say HI but it sounds like you have a full agenda anyway! The triangle-shaped building is the Metropolitan Correctional Center (featured in Hemovore and the PsyCop series!)

Polt said...

There is no way in heaven, hell or on God's green earth that I'm EVER gonna stand on that glass floor. I'm getting nauseous just looking at the photo you took!

Looks like a scenic trip so far! Hope it continues.


Lily said...

Fabulous pictures!! I'm glad you had a fun touristy day with your friends.

I really loved my trip to Chicago although I went in early Spring. Thank God, no snow but it was still quite chilly at night.

Erotic Horizon said...

I love when you go out of town... You are the only one who actually give us decent pictures to work with..

I love then..

I Liked the dual day/picture of the park... It's beautiful at night..

Aren't christmas windows fun... I love the Hello Kitty stash...

Hope you has some rest after that picture filled day..


Tam said...

Seriously Jordan? I got to see a Psycop landmark? Squeeee. *swoon* :-) I'm definitely going back with my daughter next summer.

It was a fun time Polt. The elevator is all indoors though so you wouldn't be freaked out but you could stay clear of the glass balcony.

Tam said...

Spring would definitely be an improvement Lily. It's a nice town though.

Thanks EH. That was cool to have the night and day. Lots of gorgeous lights at night. I'm pooped out, didn't sleep well and airports always exhaust me. Standing in line doesn't seem like it should be tiring but it is.

Tracy said...

Excellent pictures. I couldn't stand on that skydeck, or whatever the clear thing was called, for any length of time. Freaked me right out. lol

Tam said...

It was kind of freaky Tracy but maybe because I was enclosed it didn't feel so scary. Something like a balcony high up (even not made of glass) makes me nervous. What if I somehow managed to fling myself over the edge accidentally? Hey, it could happen. :-)

Michelle M. said...

That floor is freaking me out. Looks cold there. Come to San Diego next!

Tam said...

It was pretty cold Michelle. Not as cold as here today though. LOL San Diego is on the list. Too many places to visit. Stupid job.

asdasd said...