Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Change in Homesickness?

I usually feel homesick or saudade for New Mexico. But today, I've been kinda longing for Chicago, my other home.

This morning, I was talking to Livie's preschool teacher, who'd been in the Chicagoland area over the weekend. I was telling her about all the fun things to do in the Chicago area, and she said that the next time she and her family are there, they want to do some fun touristy stuff. (They'd been in town for a relative's graduation up at the Great Lakes Naval Station, and had been busy doing family stuff.)

So I was thinking a lot about Chicago itself and the Chicagoland area. . . how as a small child, I'd lived in Willmette, back when I was a single child before my younger siblings were born. I remembered how I'd gone to Lake Forest College, in Lake Forest, IL and all the fun stuff I did while there. I'd lived in Arlington Heights for a while after college, while I worked in Deerfield. Oh, I remembered a little tapas restaurant in Arlington Heights, but the name is not coming to me at the moment. I'd been there a couple times and thought it was such a nice place to eat, and had delicious food. Oh, and speaking of tapas . . . in Chicago itself, I was a fan of a tapas restaurant called Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba. Yummo.

A couple favorite memories revolve around hearing a c-jazz tune by Joe Sample called "Night Flight." I remember hearing it for the first time on WNUA, the local c-jazz station. I was reading a library book (Clive Cussler's Flood Tide, if you're interested) at the time, with WNUA playing softly in the background.

Anyway, I was fascinated by that song, but I'd missed the title and artist names. But then, on a rainy autumn evening on my way to the Arlington Heights Memorial Library, I'd heard it again. As I drove to the library, I enjoyed the tune, with the wiper blades swish-swishing against the windshield and the chilly rain tapping the car. It was still playing when I got to the car, so I sat in the parking lot hoping to catch who the artist was and what the song was called. And again, I'd missed the title and artist names - the DJ didn't come on after it was over, and another song came on right away. So I went into the library, hoping I'd hear it again soon and catch all the pertinent info.

Guess what happened when I heard it a third time? Yep, I missed what it was called, and who the artist was. But then on another night after I'd finished listening to a Blackhawks game on the radio (they'd won, by the way), I switched the station to WNUA. And I heard it again. This time, however, I heard the title and artist name! Woo hoo! And this is how I became a fan of Joe Sample. While I lived in Arlington Heights. For some reason, when I hear Joe Sample's "Night Flight," I feel like I'm home with a good book, having just heard (or watched) the Blackhawks win a game.

And since I'm a HUGE Blackhawks fan, I've been reminiscing about going to games at the United Center with my brother and his friend.We always had a lot of fun going to games, eating United Center nachos, cheering for the 'Hawks!

Oh, and I got a tattoo (the Blackhawks' logo - the one with the crossed tomahawks on the C) in Chicago: a permanent reminder of my former home. ;)

Plus, Andrew and I got married in Chicago, at Holy Name Cathedral. Beautiful place, beautiful architecture, lots of history. (And down the street from some awesome Chicago deep dish pizza at Giordano's and Italian at Rosebud on Rush.)

One thing that I really miss is Lake Shore Drive at night. Beautiful! I love seeing the darkness that is Lake Michigan on the east side of LSD, and the bejeweled city on the west. Seriously, it looks like the city is wearing bling, with all the twinkling lights. Ahhh, it is a wonderful sight.

There is just SO MUCH to do and see around there.

And as a final note: There is a fellow Lake Forest College alum, Tim, who recently posted a photo of Chicago on Facebook. I just wanted to say that while I was reminiscing about Chicago all day because of Olivia's preschool teacher, his photo is what prompted me to write down some memories of my beloved Windy City.

Oh, and here are a few photos that I want to share from last year's trips back to Chicago.

The Bean (Cloud Gate sculpture in Millennium Park) and the city:

The Bean, the clouds, the city's reflections:

Again, the Bean:


Livie's "pushing" the Bean.

The city, the river . . . 

The Hancock building, with fog swirling around . . .

The Water Tower and the Hancock Building at night . . .


Little Merry Sunshine said...

Awesome post! We miss YOU in Chicago!

The tapas restaurant you love is La Tasca (http://www.latascatapas.com/index2.html). Next time you're in town, I know where we'll dine!

Sonya said...

Sounds great! I'm always up for tapas! :)

Little Merry Sunshine said...

I LOVE the pics! They really add a lot to your post! Thank you for sharing them!

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