I’m sitting on a grassy hill just north of the Adler Planetarium reflecting on my first week here in Chicago. I’m in a beautiful shady spot – in front and to my left, the skyline; to my right, the lake, chock a block full of boats on a sunny Sunday.
I’m discovering more and more how ideal my location is: within a block of the blue, red, and pink line train and a stone’s throw from the park district, lake, and museum campus. I feel really lucky. I’ve been mostly trying to get my house set up, and figure out what kind of a neighbourhood I live in. So far, I really like it. It is very urban, but nestled in a reasonably quiet spot. Because it is in the loop, evenings and weekends are especially quiet – which is just fine by me. There are a few tree-lined streets and a pocket park less than a block from my place. The famous Jazz showcase is a short walk away, as is the museum campus, the Art Institute, the symphony and ballet. I’ve heard they all have good deals for students – and I’m going to milk my status for everything it’s worth.
My apartment faces east, so I have wonderful morning light. I look over a green roof and out towards the lake. There are a few gaps in the lakefront buildings that yield a view of the lake. I love watching the sailboats in the afternoons and early evenings – it’s just spectacular. (Also makes me think of one ML, which I love). The apartment feels just the right size for me – big enough not to be claustrophobic, and small enough to keep tidy and organized. My landlords, Jenna and “Ben” (heh) have been the most welcoming. I’m really looking forward to getting to know them a bit better.
I now have a bed, am connected to the WWW’s (heh) and have a local phone number (- two, actually, because I have a land line. It was cheaper to get my internet if I also got a phone… Figure me that one…). I know where to buy groceries, where to get a great cup of joe, and I’ve found a group to ride with. This morning I was back in the saddle for a 70 km Sunday ride – we barely made it out of the city, but it was really nice to be riding. I’m looking forward to exploring the city on two wheels.
I am feeling pretty at home here. I’m surprised at how few times I’ve felt really lonely – I’ve had my moments, but I am trying to reflect on how nice it is to be able to take in the city at my own pace, and to be able to come home to just me myself and I. I’m feeling grateful to have the time to get settled, oriented, and organized before my classes start. AND… I’m also glad to have forked out for the phone plan that includes texting and calling to Canada.
I’ll try to keep updated here with things I do. I’ve decided to try and get back in the habit of taking photos just a little bit… no promises, but I’ll see what I can do.