I *really* liked my visit to Chicago -- in discussions with E, F&P, I even compared it favorably to New York, referring to it as cleaner, more planned, and more civilized. I sincerely believed these things when I said them.
And yet, despite the identified "betterness" of Chicago against the big apple, per the usual, upon arrival and every day of my visit, something (or many things) about Manhattan struck a chord of pure joy with me.
There's so much humanity. So many people. With so many very different lives. I can't help but notice the obvious variety and differences between the individuals in the masses, and as such, as my own particular brand of weirdo in the walking crowds, I feel less alone.
We're all so different. But together, in the same physical space and doing the same basic breathing, eating, walking, ducking to avoid the rain -- I feel a part of something so much bigger than myself, with so much energy. And it's wonderful.
Our hotel for this stay was on 36th street, just outside of Korea Town. So, after checking in, we went to dinner and started the meal with a table full of delicious Banchan.
|This is my favorite thing about Korean food! Mmmm... pickled and delicious side dishes.|
Day 2, I woke early, worked 3-4 hours, and then Nish and I did a quick fast 5K each at the hotel gym (we're doing the NYC marathon together, and one benefit of dropping out of Chicago is that I was in decent shape to join her on some runs this week). From there, we headed to a spa for massages, lunch at Babbo with her hubby & babe (yeah, that's right, their not quite 2 year old was well behaved enough to join us for a fancy lunch at Babbo. He's a rock star.)
|Lego Statue of Liberty in Madison Square Garden|
Day 3, I worked, headed to a lunch with a professional colleague with whom I've worked for almost a year and had not yet met. We had a fun chatty lunch at Taralluci e Vino in the Flatiron district. I walked to and from the lunch, worked before and after it, and E&I met up with D at Inakaya -- they did a good job of transporting the concept we loved from Tokyo into midtown Manhattan and we had a very enjoyable meal and experience.
Day 4, E&I woke, packed and headed to the airport.
And now, finally, after 8 packed days away, I am thrilled to be home.
Bonus -- since I didn't actually do a marathon in Chicago and my knee seems to have recovered after a few easy days and some icing, I'm excited to get up early and fit in a long run tomorrow.