The Windy City. Day 3

Yesterday defined the slogan of ‘Windy City’ that is for sure. I have noticed a theme about Chicago – Starbucks. We have started out every day with a green and white cup in hand. I attempted to use the coffee maker in our room yesterday, but something went majorly wrong. I had my cup ready to go with creamer and I brewed coffee, which typically for me I could do with my eyes closed. Well, when I went to add the brewed coffee to my cup it all came out watery – not even a tea tint to it. I opened up the top and the coffee pouch was floating above water. I gave up, gave in, and just went and got in line at the bucks. Coffee maker 1 : Heather 0.

We had to catch the train/subway/The L – whatever you want to call it to get to Wrigley in time for the Cubs/Cardinals game that got moved to Noon. Getting a card loaded with money to be able to get on the train was an interesting experience. Chaos to say the least, there were tons of St. Louis fans trying to make it to the game as well. So when you put about 300 people underground at a ticket kiosk for a train that they don’t understand how to use, it doesn’t turn out so well. People were running all around trying to find the fastest line, people yelling, mass confusion – I don’t know how the movies makes this look so easy. We finally got our ticket and then had to go through the spinning bars like you do at Worlds of Fun. More chaos, prepare yourself. No one could get the ticket booth machine to take their ticket properly; everyone was slamming into the bars that wouldn’t let them trough. Finally, Patrick to the rescue, we got them working and were able to go stand in line to get on the train. I was so excited, it got windy and loud and the train was coming, as it stopped and the doors opened it had to already be over maximum capacity. People were on top of each other, the doors were closing and everyone was shoving in as quickly as possible. We rode this way all the way to Wrigley – a good thirty minutes probably. At this point it was fair to say – The L: 1 : Everyone using the train: 0.

Arriving in Wrigley was a surreal experience – everything you think baseball would be in a town that appreciates the sport it was. There were venders everywhere with apparel, live bands playing, ticket scalpers screaming, people snapping pictures as quickly as they could, and everyone decked out in team gear. The stadium is huge from the outside, and it is in the center of a small city (or suburb, whatever they call it here) everything surrounding it was baseball related. We got some Cubs gear and headed in. Our seats were great; we were 5 rows up from the dugout on the first base side. There was no jumbotron, hotdog races, smile and kiss cam, or 2 million dollar party deck. It was a classic stadium, not technology updated, and filled with people who truly enjoy the sport of baseball for what it is. The field was beautiful; it is definitely a location for the people of Chicago to be proud of.  The food was great, the weather was freezing, but the feel of being in Wrigley Field was awesome.

After the game we went to a bar called Beer Clark, there was a piano player who doubled as a DJ, and traveling band. When we first got there it was low key and we were able to sit and watch the KU football game, listen to music, enjoy some drinks, and people watch. They had interesting food including chicken tenders that were breaded in Captain Crunch cereal. It got a little wild as many of the locals came in. After witnessing people crashing into our table, holding a bottle of bear above their head and tilting their head back to catch as much as they could in their mouth, we decided to leave. Wrigley is a cool town and has a lot of history, but people in Chicago are not as friendly as they are in Kansas, nor are they aware of their surroundings and being respectful to other people.

We came back and took a nap and didn’t go to eat dinner until about ten or eleven at night. We went to Pizzeria Due since it was basically down the street and we were starving. The actual building is pretty cool, very old and classic look as you would expect in Chicago. Patrick had some more deep dish pizza and I got a famous Italian beef. This was one place we were not much impressed with. The food I would rate a five out of ten, I don’t know what the big uproar is about Italian Beefs, but they didn’t have any flavor and it was tons of meat. The building I would rate a seven out of ten and the crowd surrounding our table I would rate a two out of then. Another theme I have realized about Chicago is the residents are not as welcoming as home sweet home, Kansas. Dorothy had it right when she said… there is no place like home. Day four to come… can’t wait.

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