My visit to Chicago was a perfect combination of people and place. Cities tend to feel like personalities or characters in and of themselves, regardless of ay actual human encounters. Some cities feel tired and aged while others feel cool; savvy. They leave a print on one’s mood in the same way that a person can.
We were fortunate to experience both the city and individuals within the city. Our Chicago-area time began on Wheaton’s campus. It seemed like every corner we turned led us to an interesting conversation with someone, just as warm as the weather around us was cool. We began our visit with two friends we knew of at the school and left with a handful of new valuable friends to add. Conversations covered a wide spectrum from the weave of humanity and spirituality to the way it may feel to live in airports and hotels. It was a deeply good visit.
Our visit of Chicago was wonderful as well. Chicago’s personality feels young but mature and…accomplished. It is full of art and pedestrian-friendly organization. The weather was chilly so we bundled up and took to the streets with our hands in our pockets and backpacks on our backs. The cold and the weight of our packs worked together to tire our feet. We walked from Millennium Park to Navy Pier and back, weaving up and down streets as we went for a far from “as the bird flies” journey from place to place. We found nooks and benches to rest on and finally found ourselves under a bridge to wait for a ride from our new friend. The rain fell softly outside of our industrial tent but we were mostly warm and quite dry.
My husband and I smiled at one another at the places we find goodness in. Our dry spot under the bridge was a wonderful place to enjoy each others’ company against the feel of the city floor.
It felt like we were in a stranger’s house, keeping dry under someone else’s roof. Perhaps we were. We borrowed it for our few minutes and appreciated its warmth before stepping once again into the world of accessibility and comfort.