Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Day 4 - Chicago (Injury #1)

Day 4- Chicago (Injury #1)

After an excellent evening strolling and eating (and drinking) at an outdoor restaurant a few steps from our hotel, Pam and I got up early and went for a run down on the shores off Lake Michigan.  There are running trails for miles along the coast, and we could easily have run right downtown. Of course by 9 am it was pretty humid, so we were only out 45 minutes or so. After breakfast the four of us took the transit (called the “L” for elevated) towards downtown. We walked downtown around Millennium Park for awhile and then made our way to Navy Pier.  One of the major tourist attractions in Chicago, it is a long area jutting out into Lake Michigan complete with an amusement park, Ferris wheel, shopping, and lots of places to eat. The boys ate at Bubba Gump’s’, from the movie Forrest Gump, while Pam and I continued our quest to eat at every Margaretville on earth and went there. Both restaurants were great quality and the surroundings were enjoyable as well.

We did have our first and hopefully only injury to report today. You might think it would have been one of the boys who were guilty of gazing at something when they should have been paying attention. Or you might think it was Paul who was guilty of staring at one of Chicago’s famous attractive women, but you would be wrong. The injured one is Pam, who unfortunately fell off a curb. Not sure what really happened, but she did a pretty good pratfall. Fortunately she was not holding the camera at the time, so it is fine. Two skinned knees, and a mildly sprained ankle later she was fine. Still limping a bit, and she did take advantage of a friendly first aid attendant at Wrigley who wrapped it for her.

The ballpark was next. Wrigley Field is 98 years old, and is a gold mine for every business around the park, but in reality it is a dump. It looks 98 years old in parts, but they do a great job to make it look like a major league park, and it clearly is still popular, with crowds of 35000 at least every night.  We got there just after the gates open to watch batting practice and to soak up the atmosphere, because that’s what you do when you only get there once every seven or eight years. Greg actually got a ball hit into the stands during batting practice, which is also one of the main reasons for getting there early. The game itself had a bit of everything. A big lead by Miami early, with the Cubs rallying late to make it a bit close, but ultimately Miami prevailed 9-5.

The other highlight was that Jim Belushi threw out the first pitch and led the crowd in the singing of “ Take Me Out to the Ballgame”, a Wrigley tradition. A short ride back to the hotel and the day was done. But of course we had to go back to our favorite outdoor restaurant for the daily special and a cool drink. Even with Pam’s sprained ankle she had no trouble getting there for last call.
Tomorrow we are on to Detroit.

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