After 10 days, I am finally back in my own apartment on my own couch and am so excited to pull things like underwear out of drawers and not a suitcase.
I had a really good time though. I got off track in posting when our group went to Wisconsin to check out how some other small communities use the Main Street Program in their towns. I couldn't exactly post from a bus and was so tired when I'd get back to my hotel room I just didn't have posting in me.
I'd never been to Wisconin before and am glad I had a chance to see it. I had coffee at a new shop called Windsor Bakery in Lake Mills, Wisc. We had Wisconsin brews at a brewery called Taranya, spent the night in White Water, Wisc., and had a fantastic dinner at a super cool place called Cafe Belwah in Beloit, Wisc.
Then it was back to Chicago for the beginning of our conference where we stayed at the absolutely beautiful Palmer House Hilton downtown. Check out the hotel tour.
Since I was at the conference and had some other work to do for my job, I didn't see all the things in Chicago I wanted to, like: Wrigley field, some hotdog place Linds C. recommended, and walking a few other neighborhoods that friends told me were cool.
I did get to do some really great stuff though, like see friends I hadn't hung out with for a while, and eat at some awesome restaurants like OY SY for sushi, Tamarind for Pho soup, the Rosebud steakhouse, and Le Lan - an Asian fusion place that was phenom!
I did some nice city-morning runs - which I miss, explored some neighborhoods, caught a blues band, had deep dish pizza, went shopping at Forever 21 (yeah, I couldn't help it), got my picture taken at the Sears Tower, hung out a lot with Tyler, and took a cab, rode the Metro (El), admired the sounds of the city, and walked everywhere - all things I haven't had or done in a long, long time.
Overall, I'd give this trip two thumbs up...but let me tell you what...I'm also really glad to be home.
A photo overview...