However, as someone who lives here, I do tend to gravitate to what I know and what I like. I have my favorite restaurants, stores, bars and even festivals. I find that I stick to the same four or five neighborhoods, mostly because they're close to my apartment. As far as attractions, well, I don't really go to very many, except when friends or family come to town and I play tour guide for a couple days. But this job has opened my eyes to a number of things I never knew existed, from off-beat tours to dynamic museums. It's even inspired an idea for my birthday--a kayak tour on the Chicago River!
Here are just a few places I never thought about going before:
|Source: City of Chicago|
Smart Museum of Art
|Source: University of Chicago|
National Museum of Mexican Art
And I also learned about some interesting events, exhibits and shows going on around the city, such as Chicago Ideas Week (which I will be getting tickets for), Theatre Week and Exposition Chicago.
Another great part of this job is that I've found some new websites that provide information on developments around the city, such as new hotels, city planning and beautification projects, and transportation updates. I'm definitely more informed about what's happening in the city, which always comes in handy.
I know Chicago is an incredible city, but there was so much about it I never knew until now. It really makes me wonder how much we take advantage of the places we live, not really appreciating them for what they are. I lived in Denver for 18 years--though the first few are a bit fuzzy--and I never realized how great it is until I left for college. It wasn't until I spent some time away that I realized how lucky I was to live there. I feel that with Chicago, I didn't make the same mistake, I have realized how fortunate I am to live here. And I plan on experiencing even more of what this city has to offer--now that I know there is a lot I've been missing.