Hi friends! Happy Thanksgiving to my American buds…and happy Thursday to everyone else!
So continuing on with my recap week, day 3 in Chicago.
In the morning, I went straight for the breakfast buffet. Scrambled eggs, bacon, melon and french toast. I ended up going back for my bacon – one of those foods that I don’t eat as often as I should, considering that I do really enjoy it!
Another morning at the conference – more interesting presentations! Because I plan on focusing a lot of media for my MA thesis next year, I stuck with media-related presentations for the most part. One of the presentations I attended was a round-table discussion focusing on crime representations in the media. I’m really critical when it comes to media/news, so it was interesting to hear the opinions of people who actually work in it. They have a lot of the same issues with it as I do, so I enjoyed being able to listen to their discussion.
so…any SNL fans out there?
You remember the Cheezeborger, no fries, chips, no Pepsi, coke skit with John Belushi?
Well…I ate there for lunch.
Also happens to be the same area where the chase scenes in Blues Brothers and The Dark Knight were filmed!
So, I had to do John Belushi proud and get the “cheezeborger, double cheeze”.
And, while watching the season 2 premiere of Anthony Boudain’s The Layover on Chicago, I couldn’t help but notice we ate our Billy Goat Tavern burgers the same way – added ketchup and pickles. Weird things make me happy.
Really, the cheeseburger wasn’t anything special, but the story behind it made it pretty awesome.
I didn’t try it, but I was intrigued!
After some more walking, we headed up to the Field Museum. The Field Museum is a museum of natural history that first opened in 1893. I had no idea they had such an impressive museum in Chicago.
The museum is also home to Suzie, the most complete t-rex skeleton in the world.
Impressive! When I showed Eric this picture, he told me that scientists have recently discovered that t-rex’s were actually covered in feathers, not scales as we assumed. So basically, Suzie would have looked more like a giant chicken than anything else.
That’s one hell of a chicken.
Unfortunately, we got to the museum too close to closing time to be able to see all the exhibits, but we were able to see two of the three special exhibits. The Maharaja exhibit, which focused on Indian history, and the Extreme Animals exhibit, which was awesome. I’m definitely an animal lover (I wanted to be a veterinarian as a kid) so it was cool to find out more about them. Unfortunately, no pictures were allowed in the special exhibits, so I can’t show you guys any of the cool things in there.
But they were allowed in the rest of the museum – we made sure to hit up the Egyptian exhibit. Being an archeologist was also on the list of things I wanted to be at some point in my life (seriously, I did – and continue to – change my mind every 7.5 seconds about my future career) because I found Egyptian history so fascinating. I’ve done at least 5 projects throughout my life on Cleopatra – she was one impressive woman!
Mummies are interesting, but a little creepy to look at. There’s a dead person wrapped up in there!
Egyptians sure loved their cats, didn’t they?
After closing, we made the walk back to the hotel (a good 2.5 miles) just in time for the Manager’s Reception (I told you we took advantage!)
Sangria is one of my absolute favourites!
We didn’t feel like wandering too far for dinner, so we headed to Volare, an Italian place up the road.
(pictures are a bit blurry…might have something to do with that sangria )
We got an appetizer of calamari for the table.
I swear, you can always judge a restaurant by it’s calamari. It’s so easy to overcook and have it go all rubbery on you, so if the calamari’s good you know you’re in for a good meal.
This definitely passed the test! I adore calamari, and Volare’s version was perfectly crispy and tender. So, so good.
Because I had filled up on calamari (and apps at the hotel) Nicole and I decided to split a few dishes.
We ordered the Insalata di Fagiolini – green beans, roasted tomatoes, crab meat, toasted almonds and pecorino cheese with a garlic dressing. Definitely unlike any salad I’ve had before, but I enjoyed it.
You can never go wrong with a shrimp cocktail, can you? These shrimp were almost as big as my fist – ridiculous.
And meatballs are absolutely necessary in an Italian restaurant, right?
Overall, this was a fabulous meal!
We talked about going out that night to check out the Chicago club scene, but I’m pretty sure we were all passed out by 11. Party animals, clearly.
Italian food, a famous burger and a giant t-rex…definitely a great day!
<— What dish do you judge a restaurant by?
<— Do you like museums? Any favourite exhibits?