the good NEws - Chicago

There’s something to be said for the Nebraska view: being able to see for miles and miles.

But there’s also something to be said for the Chicago view that Shea and I had this weekend: looking out from our 22nd floor room to a clear view of the streets and buildings of downtown.

Both have their appeal, but, I gotta tell ya: upon comparing the view from our non-downtown Omaha hotel (which consisted of flatness and Milt’s Mini Storage units) to the downtown Chicago view - the latter absolutely won out.

It was quite the payoff after having some troubles finding our hotel, including walking in the wrong direction for several blocks while carrying our bags. But from then on, our weekend get-a-way was near perfect. Which was great, because this was really the first time that I have planned a trip myself, from booking flights to hotels, and was the first real one-on-one trip that I’ve ever had. I guess there’s no place like Chicago to make that happen.

Even though we didn’t have a ton of time there and despite the nasty weather on Friday that kept us from exploring too far, we certainly made the most of it.

Our first stop was ice skating in Millennium Park - one of the only things that we had bookmarked as something that we HAD to do. Shea had never been ice skating before, and I, despite growing up playing hockey, can’t remember the last time I was on skates (maybe before high school.) Once I switched skates and got rid of the first pair that felt like a vice grip with a sandpaper interior on my ankles, carving up the ice again felt incredible. And with the city lights shining against the night, it was the perfect backdrop.

We were also able to ride on the giant Ferris Wheel on Navy Pier. With the snow falling and a great view of the city sky-line, it was also an image and moment to remember.

To read the full column, see this week's issue of the Clay County News (2/15/12)