20140826 - Great Day 2 B 15

20140826 - Off the bus at 7am in Chicago. Our first stop was a tour of Union Station that was right across the street from where we got off the bus.  From there we took a short walk to our hotel where we changed and then were able to get our room and store out stuff. 

It was too early to do anything so we asked where a good breakfast could be found and were directed to Lou Mitchell's. We walked there and found it a great little local diner that is a regular stop for presidents and movie stars, and had a fabulous breakfast topped off by a happy birthday serenade and a huge piece of cake.  

On to the first destination, the Sky Ledge at the top of the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower.  We watched the video and then zoomed up 103 floors for a amazing views all around the city. The next part was a bit unsettling, where we walked out on a glass box that hangs 1353 feet above the street :-o  It was super cool but I didn't want to stay out there for long :-s

Our next stop was the Money Museum in the Chicago Federal Reserve. There were some cool displays and $3 MILLION in cash in there: a 4'x4' cube of 1 million $1 bills, a 1 million dollar pile of $20 bills and a briefcase with 1 million in $100 bills.  We got a bag of money from there (shredded) and headed down the road.

Our next stop was the start of famous Route 66.  One block over was the end of Route 66. Seemed like a short trip, don't understand why it is so famous ;-)

Across Michigan Ave and down a bit we came to a water park with great big monoliths that had water pouring over them into a shallow splash pool kids were playing in. The monoliths had screens that showed faces on them that moved, changed expressions and spit out a stream of water every now an then. 

With the skies darkening was found the Bean and walked around it looking at our reflections and all the people taking pictures.  Now raining we seemed shelter and found some buildings that were connected so we could get to our next destination, the Chicago Tribune building that has famous artifacts from all over the world embedded in its walls.

The rain ceased and we walked all the was around the building. D's favorite rock was one from the beaches of Normandy (just under the light). From here we found a Microsoft store we ha to check out in a huge Nordstrom's complex. 


Then down under the city to the world famous Billy Goat's Tavern where we each got a 'CHEEZBORGER CHEEZBORGER' (double cheeseburger). It was good to sit and listen to the locals and read all the stuff on the walls. 

Next was a long walk on an empty pier. The Navy Pier was pretty deserted an not a lot going on. We made it to the end and D sat on a huge anchor. 

Back to the front of the pier where we grabbed a cab, D's first cab ride ever, to Wrigley Field. We got tickets for the tour and checked out the souvenir shop across the street made of shipping containers to kill some time before the tour. We took the tour and learned a top about the place, the team and all of the history. It was super cool and a really neat stadium. 

The tour ended on the field. It was amazing how perfect everything was groomed and flat. Not the dusty lumpy fields we are use to...  Looking across the field, right in front of me was a feather...  


Tour over and we jumped on the train to head back into town. We went to the huge fountain down in front of Lake Michigan.  

We got a drink and them walked to the Field Museum that was about to close and decided not to pay full price for an hour tour before it closed...  We walked towards the train again and found a neat headless and armless steel figures in a park. Onward to find a charger for D's phone and to the train to head to the stadium. 

We arrived at the stadium stop and took a short walk around to Gate 3, where Uncle Russ had arranged for us to meet 'a guy' that got us into the Scout's Lounge. The Scout's Lounge was a buffet where we could hangout and eat before the game. We had a nice meal and a lot of looks as we were the only Indians in the place :-o  up to our seats and we had a great view for the game. We took a break and went to the team store where D picked out a shirt and hat. When we got back to our seats we decided to move even closer and settled in the 6th row behind the dugout.  There was a group of Sox fans there that were very nice and we spent the rest of the game having a lot of fun with them, listening to the heckler and seeing D's name up on the scoreboard. The game went into extra innings and the Indians won!  A quick train ride back into the city and then what was supposed to be a short walk to our hotel that turned into a fence barricade jumping, six lane highway frogger crossing, cement wall jump detour.  Our detour did lead us to an abandoned building that was used in one of the Transformer movies :-)  Back to the hotel and exhausted we fell asleep easily.
What a great day with a great young man I'm proud to have as my son.
Happy 15th Birthday D, I love you buddy.