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Well, I was running late again. It was Sunday and I had hoped to catch up with a Chicago for Chicagoans Old Town neighborhood tour hosted by Liz Gariboy (Pub Crawl Liz) from my new obsession, the Old Town Ale House podcasts…but I was listening to the latest podcast and putzing, relaxing with my daughter and well, time slipped by and I had to literally run out of the house…and note to self…and to you. North Avenue on Sunday afternoons is a traffic nightmare. I made the mistake of following Siri’s advice to take North Avenue to Sedgwick…Unless you have an emergency need for home furnishings or an appointment at the Apple Bar…avoid this area…So in my frenzy, I drove by the meeting place, went to the wrong location and by the time I circled back I was at least 30 minutes late and too embarrassed to try to track the tour group down. Actually, kind of a normal situation for me lately. Sigh….
Anyway, I had my camera with me and the sun was shining so I decided to wander through Lincoln Park. Now I just recently moved back to Chicago and I haven’t spent any time by the lake. I was just reminiscing with my 14 y/o daughter what a rollerblading goddess I used to be…oh…20ish years ago…spending the day rolling along the Lake Shore Drive, navigating the sidewalks of the Gold Coast and dining or cocktailing outside during the summer…which inspired me to head over to the North Avenue Beach area. I almost made the mistake of pulling into the parking in the lot…$19.00 for 1 hour or less? Really? When did your impending robbery amount get posted? Quickly I pulled around to the circle drive, over the curb, and parked by the other 2 smart people enjoying the lake in their cars, not parked in $19/hour parking.
I got out of the car and wandered up by the beach, it was about 25 degrees, crisp and clear. The North Avenue Beach House hadn’t changed in 20 years. It looks like a vintage ship floating on the sand and I love the contrast of the white and blue details. I wondered when this ship-like thing was originally built. The art moderne (reminds me of art deco) “Life Guard” or “Lifeguard” signs making an ironic winter statement. The different but complimentary shades of lake blue and sky blues combined with the beach sand was a blast of calm nostalgia. There really is something very calming and magical about a deserted beach in the winter. Obviously I wasn’t the only one who thought so. As I wandered and wondered, a few more cars pulled up and unloaded. Looked like they were setting up for a photo shoot. I couldn’t quite make out the the ethnic attire details from a distance, but I saw the models slipping white, full skirted dresses over their clothes, the camera person heading off down the walkway…or maybe it was a wedding shoot? Who knows…
It ended up being worth it to change course and wander with my camera and enjoy the winter beach and calm waters of Lake Erie. Kinda felt like a little welcome home hug.
Keep wandering. Keep wondering…and keepin’ it a little weird.
Michele Marie