Last week I finally got to come up for air and go on vacation. I went to Chicago because:
- I had never been there, but knew lots of people who had either lived there or visited for extended periods of time, and they all said I should go.
- Due to the above reason, I had set part of my first novel in Chicago during the 1950s-early 1960s, and thought it might *cough* be a good idea for me to research what the place was like then, and book learning wasn't going to get me all the way there.
- Quite frankly, it was a cheap quick flight & hotel combo and I just needed to be somewhere completely new to me so I could get out of my head and reflect a bit.
As for Chicago itself: I'm glad I stuck to near the lake. I get nervous if I'm too far away from a major body of water for too long. And as touristy as it is, I'm glad I went to the Sears Tower the morning of my first day there. It was a good orientation and the audio tour that went with my ticket helped a lot with street navigation during the rest of the trip.
My acid test of any city is that it should make you happy just to walk down a random street and see what there is to see along it, whether you've known them all your life or are seeing them for the first time. Chicago passed that, easily.
Here's the photos I took, for what they're worth (the photo of the sculpture is a link):
*The truth is, the vast majority of the story set in Chicago happens inside a house. The vast majority of the parts that don't occur inside a restaurant. So really I didn't have to research this a lot. But now that I have, I have lots of other information to draw from.