Friday, February 18, 2011

This is my kind of town, Chicago is...

My kind of town, Chicago is
My kind of people too
People who smile at you
-Frank Sinatra, My Kind of Town

With the -19 degree windchill, I'm not sure Chicago is my kind of town. And I'm not too sure about the smiling thing ... most people's faces are wrapped in scarves, so it's a bit hard to tell if they're smiling. But one week ago, I was with my kind of people and having a blast in the windy city.

(Oh yes, it was THAT cold!)

Why was I in the windy city, you might ask? Well, I can't really tell you. I signed a contract that I wouldn't blog about my experience. (I'm no social media expert, but I can say for sure that people will talk. I might suggest that some folks in this organization embrace the power of social media rather than trying to quash the discussion, but that's a conversation I'm not planning to have with Harpo. Uh, I mean, the organization who told me not to blog about what I saw.)

So, what did we do? A picture's worth a thousand words, I think!

(I was seriously hoping for a cutout we could pose with, but this larger-than-life poster seemed to work just as well!)

My fantastic friend LJ got 4 tix to see something fun in Chicago, which I of course am not blogging about. And who did we see there - other than this super-cool poster of my Aunt O? Well, even though we were on the very back row, we had a great "View" (cough, cough) of some wonderfully entertaining women in the news media. We laughed a lot, and I'm not ashamed to admit it ... I got a bit misty eyed when those 6 amazingly talented women walked onto the stage. At 81 years old - EIGHTY ONE! - Baba Wawa is still as sharp as ever. Wow - to be in the same room with those folks!

The studio set of the event I saw (you know, the one that I'm not blogging about) was as gorgeous as it looks on TV. The folks were friendly and excited, and the warm-up girl was truly entertaining and got us pumped up about seeing Auntie O. I was somewhat surprised how little Auntie O actually interacted with the audience, but her friend Yippee (okay, if you can't figure out who I'm talking about here, I'm sorry. But I really chuckled at myself over that one...!) chatted up the audience at every commercial break.

Awesome, fantastic time. I loved every second of it!

But don't worry - if you forgot to set your DVR for 2/11/11, you didn't miss my 15 minutes of fame. Or my 1.5 seconds. Or my .15 milliseconds. We didn't make the camera, and we didn't get any "favorite things" to take home for souvenirs. But we were there - And I can say that one life experience is checked off my bucket list!

We did lots of other fun things that I really CAN blog about though. We ate the best Chicago-style deep-dish pizza that I've ever put in my mouth. The crust? Such deliciousness. If you're Chicago-bound, eat at Giordano's first.

(I wanted to eat the whole entire thing. By myself.
I tried to share with my friends, but it wasn't easy.)

We saw the city from the Sears Tower, officially now renamed the Willis Tower, but I don't think anyone actually calls it that. I highly recommend the view at night - it was absolutely gorgeous. We saw the sights, shopped the stores, and ate our way across the city like tourists. Well-layered, snow-fearing tourists in ski masks.

(The Chicago Bean, or Cloud Gate - one of the coolest public art projects I've ever seen.
If I lived in Chicago, I'd buy a DSLR and spend all my free time taking cool, artsy shots of this big shiny thing. So awesome!)

But more than any of the sights, more than any of the food, even more than the super-fun trip to see my Auntie O, what I enjoyed the most was 3 days spent with some wonderful friends. We had a fantastic girls' weekend, and I loved every second. But ladies, next time we go somewhere, let's check the weather first, okay?


Anonymous said...

Well done, my friend! I couldn't have "not written" about it better myself. This made me smile! Definitely, a trip to remember.


Anonymous said...

I hope you girls are in the early stage of a lifelong journey with girlfriends that will be as rewarding and as much fun as my peeps and I have had over the years!! LYTB, AJ