Monday, January 19, 2009

The Windy City

Bob and I spent the weekend in Chicago. We drove into the city on Saturday, got checked into the Hotel Monaco (and had a beautiful room on the 11th floor), before taking off on foot. Yes, it was cold - but thankfully, we had a major collection of scarves and mittens and we were ready for whatever nature had to offer. First stop, a quick lunch - Chicago Dogs of course. After lunch, we thought we'd head to Millenium Park and the Ice Rink and the Bean - but the "cold" won out and we opted for an hour at Borders instead. I bought a couple of books, we grabbed an XL bag of the "mix" at Garret's Popcorn and then headed back to the hotel so that Bob could watch some college basketball and take a nap. (Some things don't change - even on a get-away weekend).

We had 5:30 reservations at Petterino's, so we left the hotel and started walking. You have to walk past the Oriental Theater to get to Petterino's and unfortunately, we timed it and got there just as the 2:00 matinee of WICKED was letting out. It was a "sea of humanity". We arrived a little early for our dinner reservation, and even though the restaurant was packed, they ushered us right in to our seats. Unlike most "nice" restaurants I've been to - where they try and "turn around the tables" as quickly as possible, our waiter informed us that this was our spot until we left for the theater. Dinner was fantastic and we were never rushed. We walked the 1/2 block to the Oriental at 7:30, posed for a couple of photos and then inside to a beautiful lobby. The theater was built in 1927 and has been completely restored - absolutely beautiful!!!

I managed to snap one quick photo of the stage curtain - showing a map of OZ. Once the production started, no photos were allowed.

It was midnight by the time we made our way back to the hotel. We were cold and hungry - and I was so happy we'd decided to stay and not attempt to drive home at that hour. Sunday morning, we woke to bright sunshine and a beautiful view of the Sears Tower from our window. But don't let the sunshine fool you - the wind was blowing and it was COLD!

We enjoyed a late breakfast adjacent to our hotel, at the Southwater Kitchen and then grabbed our car from the valet and headed home. An absolutely PERFECT weekend!!!

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