Sunday, December 18, 2011

Last Saturday we ventured to Chicago

Not only do I LOVE that town, but at Christmas time it is magnified a hundred-fold. We took the train in, and it almost made me think the extensive travels were worthwhile, as the kids kind of knew what to expect and practically sat down the whole time.

Once there we walked over to Macy's. What a disappointment to write that. It was Marshall Field's until a few years ago when it was bought out, but it is the huge, block-long flagship store complete with fancy clock outside, and window after window of holiday presentation. THis year was a kind of steampunk ornament making extravaganza. Here is an example of one of the window:

After that we wandered down the streets toward Michigan Avenue and the Golden Mile. It was nippy and we were bedecked with hats and gloves, earmuffs -- the whole works -- but we still got cold.

Made it to the Water Tower Place, quite a Chicago establishment. In 1871, the city of Chicago burned to the ground. Like many early American towns, it was constructed almost completely of wooden structures. Legend blames Mrs. O'Leary's cow for kicking over a lantern in the shanty barn out behind her house. The result? It was a hot time in the old town that night.

The only place downtown of import that did NOT burn was the Old Water Tower. It still stands, and next to it is the modern American tribute to anything of historical importance: a commercial building. The Water Tower shopping mall is a prime piece of real estate. It is very expensive to open a store front there, but at this time of year, if you do have one, it is jam packed and fun and full of people and flurry. We went to the Lego store there, and a very special birthday boy picked a toy from there for his day.

Also spotted:

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