Everywhere I turn there are references to Chicago being the start of Route 66, stretching from Chicago to Santa Monica, some 2500 miles. Tomorrow we have our first orientation meeting and our opening banquet, which means tomorrow I enter the bike bubble. This is where my single focus becomes cycling every day to achieve my goal of reaching Santa Monica, one day at a time and even one pedal stroke at a time. Mostly the bike bubble is positive, each day has a structure and routine that is easy to follow and even becomes like a mantra. The 20 women plus guides I’m traveling with tend to be like minded adventurous souls. Life long friendships have resulted for me on previous trips and I expect the same will happen, again, on this trip. It is rewarding and fun to be part of a team–especially one working to accomplish a significant goal. The downside, is that being part of group, a team, requires from time to time that my personal needs and wants be subordinated to make the team successful. It’s not hard, it’s not that much, really, but it is the trade off–the sacrifice of the self to make the larger group stronger and function better. Bike bubble here I come. We start pedaling Sunday morning.
The last couple of days have been filled with the sites of Chicago.
Willis Tower Went up the Willis Tower–formerly the Sear Tower. Fun Facts, below:
- Completed construction in 1973.
- 110 stories.
- 1,450 feet high (443 meters); 1,730 feet high (520 meters) including twin antennae.
- Eighth-tallest building in the world; tallest in Western Hemisphere.
- World’s tallest building until 1998.
Frank Lloyd Wright Historic Neighborhood–Took the “L” to Oak Park and toured Frank Lloyd Wrights home, studio and walked around a lovely tree lined neighborhood to dozens of the historic prairie style homes that he designed. All are private residences so had to view from the sidewalks. Before Frank Lloyd Wright became an internationally-recognized architect, he spent the 1890s – 1910 in Oak Park, Illinois designing homes for his Chicago-area neighbors.
Chicago Deep Dish Pizza–yum, what else can I say.
Toured Wrigley Field–Name after William Wrigley, of chewing gum fame. Fun Facts about Wrigley Field
- Wrigley Field is the oldest National League ballpark and has been home to the Chicago Cubs since 1916.
- The Chicago Bears also called Wrigley home between 1921-1970.
- The ballpark was the last major league park to have lights installed for play after dark in 1988.
- No batter has ever hit the scoreboard which has been around since 1937 and is still manually operated.
- Babe Ruth’s famous Called Shot happened at Wrigley.
Art Institute of Chicago–Impressive. My favorites are the Impressionists: Monet, Van Gogh and Renoir, followed by Georgia O’Keefe.
And lastly, it SNOWED on the walk home from dinner. Please let it warm up for Sunday!