Right before moving to Vancouver, I remember thinking, ‘ok, Chicago’s amazing, but I’ve got it out of my system. It’s time to live somewhere new.’ Leaving Chicago made me realize why I fell in love with it in the first place. This post is inspired by being homesick last weekend. There’s just nothing better than Chicago!
So, in absolutely no order, here’s what I miss the most about Chicago.
1. Neighborhoods: Lincoln Park vs. Lakeview vs. River North vs. Andersonville vs Wicker Park vs South Loop, etc. etc.. We live, eat, drink, and indulge ourselves mostly inside our neighbourhoods more than anywhere else. Of course we leave them from time to time, but we just love where we live!
2. The Beaches & Lake Michigan: The only nicer beaches than the ones along Lake Michigan are in California, in my humble opinion. The endless rows of beach volleyball. Oh, don’t even get me started on how much I miss beach volleyball. The breathtaking skyline along the lakefront path. The friendly, refreshing waters of Lake Michigan and how good it felt to swim in the lake. From the south side of Chicago, all the way up to Rogers Park, Evanston, and above, the lake is so beautiful and so great! And it’s not salty like the ocean.
Every fourth of July on Central Street, people who lived in the area would reserve their spot for the parade a few days in advance by tying their lawn chairs to trees, sign posts, other chairs that were already there, or anything they could find to tie their chairs too. By the fourth, the entire beautiful, tree-lined, purple-laden Central Street was lined with lawn chairs, because that’s just what people do for the fourth.
4. Love: Chicagoans love gatherings to celebrate anything going on in Chicago. There’s an endless list of summer festivals annually; concerts; sports; birthdays; races; events; and everything for everyone! People who live in Chicago love it. And it shows.
4. Polish People: If you’re not Polish, the majority of your acquaintances are Polish, which is why you can pronounce Polish last names correctly and with ease. Second in Polish population to Warsaw, we love our Poles, their food, their laughs, and their grandmothers who force feed us their Polish food.
5. The Weather: Winter is my favourite season. I love running in the cold, and I absolutely LOVE the snow. With annually high snowfalls and serious winter weather, Chicago is a great place for me. 🙂
6. Chicago Blackhawks. I don’t think there’s a city in the entire world who is so passionate about their hockey team as much as Chicago. Every year during the Stanley Cup, the streets are completely shut down by people wearing red and black, chanting the Chelsea Dagger song, and having the times of their lives!
8. Street Cleaning: Yep, street cleaning. The thing I hated SO MUCH about Chicago. The service that makes vehicle owners cringe if they don’t have a garage. But you know what? The streets in Chicago are so clean, you can probably eat off of them compared to streets in other busy cities, i.e. Vancouver. It took moving away to really realize and appreciate how clean Chicago is. You don’t find heaps of garbage and cigarette butts on the majority of the streets in Chicago.
I will follow up with a “What I Love About Vancouver” post. 🙂