I enjoyed Chicago a great deal. Here a few things I was not aware of until I arrive:
- Doughnuts. Just… doughnuts, everywhere. Most of them are, admittedly, Dunkin Donuts, which is to say dry, crappy cakes in the shape of doughnuts, but there were also a number of independent places, to the point that the one we went to (Stan’s, where I had one of the best and definitely messiest doughnuts of my life) was catty-corner from another indie doughnut place.
- Speaking of which, I ran into a LOT of places catty-corner from another place that did the same thing. Besides the doughnuts, there were bars (okay, that’s pretty common), pizzerias, vintage clothing shops, tattoo parlors, L stations… it’s a very odd way to organize a city.
- The city is obsessed with sports. Like, the parking levels in the airport were labeled with the names of the city’s professional sports teams, of which there are roughly six quadrillion. People even wore team jerseys and hats when there wasn’t a game on! Like, just to hang out and do their regular business!
- On the other hand, the city really likes its art. There’s a lot of it, in a lot of different styles, basically all over the place. L stations, for example, all seem to have murals of one sort or another. Contrast DC’s metro stations, which are mostly hideous oppressive worm-tunnels of gray concrete.
- The city goes on forever. It just sprawls along for miles and miles.