Two weekends ago M stayed in Chicago, where he’s been working, and I went to visit. It was the third time I had been and the first time I got it, as a city….the first two times it had felt too spread out, disparate. The streets had felt too wide. The restaurants had felt too large. I’m not used to space in cities.
This time was different: for one thing, I got to spend lots of quality time with two great friends, Heather and Christine (the latter of whom moved to Chicago since the last time I visited). Heather is a very good friend to have, not only because she is incredibly kind and funny, but also because she is incredibly professionally tuned in to Chicago’s food and culture and therefore made excellent recommendations to us.
Christine is one of my closest friends from college, and she recently made the brave and awesome decision to pursue acting, which precipitated her move. I had never seen her act before, but she was conveniently opening a show while we were there, which we had the pleasure of seeing. It’s called Inventing Van Gogh, and you should see it too. Look for this lady:
(Seeing her act was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. She’s….really….good. Seriously. A natural. Whatever it is, she’s got it. And that was so moving to see, and even more incredibly, she’s only just begun…)
We stayed at Longman & Eagle, which I could not endorse more enthusiastically. It’s a small city inn with a great restaurant/bar downstairs (I am still dreaming about a fried soft-shell crab dish…) and, upstairs, a handful of thoughtfully decorated rooms.
This was ours:
(Pants on bed, shoes on floor not included)
The tub was magical, as was the room-sized shower on the other side of that wall. And each room comes equipped with reasonably priced, delicious snacks and drinks in the fridge.
We also went to Dillman’s, which I think had opened the day before (A+ pickles), and Taxim.
The low point of the weekend was sustaining a non-life-threatening, albeit face-threatening, injury that sent M and me to the ER for six hours in the early morning Saturday. The bad thing about the face is that it bleeds a lot. The good thing about the face is that it heals quickly.
(See: me, four days ago, making a carrot cake. See also: the cut on my eyebrow that looks 75% better than it had a week before.)
In conclusion: Chicago, you won me over. Not that you needed my approval. I’ll be back and ready for more eating ASAP.