Chicago for Labor Day
Monday, September 6, 2010
cortneyandjon in family, travel

Where else would we spend the long weekend? Since we have gotten most of the yard work done for the year, that is. It had been a while since we visited Curtis and his digs in Chicago so we packed up the night before and headed out early Friday morning in order to avoid general holiday traffic. Curtis can really make the big city feel like a small one—we picked up fresh meat at the local market, ate at a restaurant where he knew most of the staff, and played in a local neighborhood playground. He can also show it off to its full advantage, mile upon mile upon mile—on Friday we drove to the Aquarium, on Saturday we took through the city to dinner, and on Sunday we walked the four plus scenic miles to the beach and Navy Pier. It was the best of many worlds.

This was actually our second time at the aquarium, though I'd forgotten how incredibly expensive it is. And how worth it. It was a serious discovery visit for our curious four year old.

We caught a 4-D movie, then settled in to watch the fantastic dolphin show they've always been known for. I still remember taking in their great water show back in middle school, and I think we were all looking forward to it.

Unfortunately, like Sesame Street and so many other wonderful entertainments from our childhood, the Shedd Aquarium water show has become over-produced, over-technologied, and over-acted. We wanted to see dolphins, penguins, and beluga whales, but we saw more of the changing lights, wire-flown people, and the probably over-paid six year old with the disgusting fake smile (who we were supposed to believe was indiscriminately chosen from the audience, liars) than we did the beautiful animals. I wrote them a letter.

 The rest of the aquarium was amazing, though. Really enjoyable.

There are lots more Aquarium pictures in the Chicago album.

Then we rowed our way back to the condo to grill fresh steaks on the roof and take in a gorgeous sunset, even if it was a tad windy and chilly.

Saturday we shopped resale just for the aesthetics of it, and used books for the good literature. We also tried the door at the Museum of Holography, but we, like the people wo left he note on the door in the dust, knew it wouldn't be open.

Shopping in Chicago is fun. Duh.

And the next best thing about Chicago (besides the company, of course) is the food. Duh. Though Calvin might say it was the train ride we took to the fabulous, fabulous Mexican restaurant where Curtis knew everyone and we took our own wine.

Sunday was the most beautiful of all the days so we spent it outside, heading to the beach while touring the city on foot.

And the Navy Pier, of course.

 And a final night, this one absolutely beautiful, of grilling and eating on the roof.

Julie was there, too. And Calvin is the new photographer. It was a great trip, and now we're home. More pictures in the Chicago album.

Article originally appeared on Cortney and Jon Ophoff's Family Site (
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