Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Trip to Chicago

Chris and I went to Chicago on Saturday. We woke up early, had a light breakfast at McDonald's (I also had some strawberry banana Chobani), then we got gas, Starbucks and were on our way. The drive was long and boring. We played the license plate game (Chris thinks he won). And we played I Spy . . .which was kind of like how Dory plays in Finding Nemo . . . I was "something small and yellow." That was a blast.

When we finally got to Chicago, it was absolutely terrible. Worst drivers. Ever. And a ridiculous amount of construction. And lots of tolls as well--which accepted coins only, which we didn't have. Chris says sorry to my dad in case we get a ticket for any of that nonsense :)

Finally we made it to our hotel and almost immediately left for lunch. Sweatpants and all. We ate at Giordano's and we had to wait about 35 minutes, but it was totally worth the wait.
Chicago-style pizza with sausage
After we walked down to Starbucks and I had a strawberries and cream frappuccino with a shot of hazelnut (aka the Captain Crunch frap) while we waited for a cab. After a few hours of napping and watching the Cards game on tv, we decided to go to Michigan Avenue for some shopping and then to the Navy Pier for dinner at Bubba Gump Shrimp. 

We decided to try taking the train rather than another taxi. Basically every form of transportation in that town sucks. While we waited for the train, one went by and never stopped . . . so we waited and waited and waited until one finally stopped. Those trains are loud and disgusting. Everything is dirty and gross. We made the not-so-wise decision to get off the train and attempt to walk to Michigan Avenue rather than transferring to a different train. Woops. We ended up walking around lost for quite a while. Finally we just took a cab the rest of the way. 

We went into some of the shops and into one of the strangest malls I've ever been in. And everything was extremely crowded. Finally we made our way over to Navy Pier and found Bubba Gump Shrimp. It was over an hour wait to be seated inside, so we ate outside. It was chilly, but definitely worth it to be able to get food right away. 

The food was fantastic. We ordered hush puppies for an appetizer and they were probably the best hush puppies I've ever had. 
Hush Puppies

They also had signs on each table--one that said "Run Forrest Run" and another that said "Stop Forrest Stop." When you had it on the "stop" sign, it meant you needed something. The "run" sign meant you didn't need anything. 

For dinner, I had the crab-stuffed shrimp with a side of broccoli. It was delicious. I thought it was a little strange though that when they brought out my meal, my broccoli was a head of broccoli rather than cut up. It was still good though. The stuffed shrimp might have been the best thing I ate all weekend. 
Crab-stuffed Shrimp with garlic bread and a side of broccoli
After dinner we walked around Navy Pier and went into some of the shops. We only bought a shirt for me from the gift shop at Bubba Gump. Eventually we finally made our way to the ferris wheel. How we managed to walk around so long without finding it is beyond me. You'd think something that big would be easy to find. 
Me and Chris on the Ferris Wheel
After that, we made our way back to the train where we waited underground for a very long time. It was miserably hot down there. After we got on the train, it stopped several times because there was work being done on the tracks. We didn't get back to the hotel until almost midnight. 

In the morning we packed up our stuff and went to breakfast at Elly's Pancake House. The food there was delicious. Chris had chocolate chip pancakes with caramelized bananas with a side of sausage links and I had a "southwest" breakfast burrito with hash browns. 
Chris's pancakes--he was upset I interrupted him eating so I could take the picture :p

My breakfast burrito with beef, chihuahua cheese, and black beans
Next door to the pancake place was a Ukranian Catholic Church. Chris said we couldn't go :( I should have taken a picture of it. It was a really interesting building. After that we headed for Wrigley, and stopped for more Starbucks on the way. 

At the Cubs game
Wrigley was . . . interesting. The stadium is in the middle of a neighborhood. And basically looks like a total dump. It was also much, much colder than we thought it would be. I wore a long sleeve t-shirt and a hoodie and I was freezing. Stupid Chicago weather. 
Here's the sign you always see in movies and they conveniently cut out all the other ugly crap surrounding it.
The game was a good one--the Cardinals won 6-3. Cubs fans were not too happy. I'm pretty sure there were more Cards fans there though anyway. I'm definitely glad they won. It made the trip worthwhile. After the game we got Starbucks again and then left town. It was a long and busy drive home, and we didn't get there until almost 11. Aside from the driving and the not-so-nice people of Chicago, it was a fun trip and I'm so happy we were able to go. 

Here are some random pictures from the weekend:

@ Bubba Gump Shrimp

@ Breakfast before the game
Run, Forrest, Run!

I hope you all had a great weekend!