Our second (and last) night in Chicago, I took a solitary walk South from our hotel….

Our second (and last) night in Chicago, I took a solitary walk South from our hotel. They call Chicago the Windy City, and it really earned the name that night. The wind threatened to topple my tripod more than once. I learned to stand in such a way that my body blocked most of the force of the wind, with my hand encircling one leg, never touching but ever vigilant for that unexpected gale.

I saw a lady with silver hair walking a small dog near Grant Park. That was the only person I saw that night, but I felt a bit safer knowing she felt safe. In Saint Louis, at the turn of this century, one did not willy nilly walk the city streets at night. Once, years before, while driving to the theatre in Forest Park, a hubcap rolled off of Mom's old stationwagon, and she opted to drive on rather than risk going after it. The first time I saw a city other than St. Louis, I was shocked to see pedestrians downtown. And, while there were plenty of people walking confidently on Michigan Avenue, the streets were empty in this part of town.

To be sure, that was the night they aired It's a Wonderful Life, so maybe everyone was home watching the tele. They'd made a special point to air it only once in 2001 because people had complained about the over-airing of the movie in years past. I had set up my VCR to record it at home so I wouldn't miss the one and only opportunity to see it. Amazingly enough, while It's a Wonderful Life is considered a holiday classic today, it was not a well-liked movie when it first came out. In fact, the only reason it earned its place in American culture is because they showed it so often every year that it wormed its way into our traditions. Personally, I like the movie, no matter what anybody says. But I'm glad I went out to explore the city and take a few more photos before our trip had ended.

Thus comes to a close the #Thanksgiving2001 #montanastories. This wasn't the last trip we took in Mom's Montana van, but it is my favorite of them, and one of the last I will tell. When I talked to the DMV office today, they said I have everything I need to re-title Mom's van into my name. We shall see what they say at the local office. But it looks like this adventure may be coming to an end.

#filmphotography

Our second (and last) night in Chicago, I took a solitary walk South from our hotel. They call Chicago the Windy City, and it really earned the name that night. The wind threatened to topple my tripod more than once. I learned to stand in such a way that my body blocked most of the force of the wind, with my hand encircling one leg, never touching but ever vigilant for that unexpected gale.

I saw a lady with silver hair walking a small dog near

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10 thoughts on “Our second (and last) night in Chicago, I took a solitary walk South from our hotel….

  1. Thanks for sharing your story Laura..for all that photography has become to myself and so many others, we cannot forget that one of the best reason to take photos is to capture cherished memories.

  2. I’ve never felt afraid in downtown Chicago. Can’t say the same for Phoenix, Houston , or Dallas. I totally relate to your description of the wind there in Chicago.

  3. Yes lady. Was an excellent story. Have heard of, "It's a wonderful life." And I think there is even an iconic poster to go with the movie. Yet, did not know the background. Cool.

  4. Oh geez I so love your prose as well as your shots lil sis +Laura Ockel​. The movie "It's a Wonderful Life" is a marvelous cinematic form of art. Unfortunately due to the latest evolutionary form of us hominids, we view it as "It Was A Wonderfull Life". Life is good and by god you know that every time that you hear a bell ring it means that the particles of our atmosphere are dancing around your ears. Self awareness of one's self and the universe is quite humbling. Every time you hear a bell ring should remind you of the beauty of the here and now .Sorry…….lol.

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