Nonetheless, this weekend I was not about to let some shitty weather hold me down, so Kaitlyn and I took a little roadtrip out of our normal stomping grounds to the home of John Hughes, Mean Girls, and apparently, a fake Leaning Tower of Pisa. Why it could only be... The North Shore! (Look guys, I like all your sunny beach weekend getaway pictures too, but this is what Chicago is working with this year, so bear with me okay?)
But first - fuel.
Kaitlyn had never been to Superdawg, a cutesy retro drive-in up way the hell up north on Milwaukee, so we had to stop in for an inaugural Superdawg experience. Fun fact - While we were there, the car in front of us in the lot was full of four adults, in business formal, silently eating hot dogs. This was weird enough (seeing as how it was a Saturday afternoon), but then at one point, they made one guy get out of the car, and eat his hot dog standing up next to the vehicle? IT WAS SO WEIRD. Where were they going? Why weren't they talking? Why did the one guy have to leave the car? Why were they in business formal on a Saturday? Why hot dogs? We really thought about following them when they left to get answers, but then we realized that's creepy as hell and if we got caught, there would be absolutely no way of explaining our way out of it.
Life's unanswered questions aside, Superdawg was awesome.
Just around the corner from Superdawg, is a roadside oddity that I can't believe has been so close to me this whole time and I never knew about it. It's like meeting the love of your life and discovering you grew up on the same block and never crossed paths.
THE LEANING TOWER OF NILES.
This roadside beauty was built in the 1930's in Niles, Illinois, a sister-city of Pisa. It is half the size of the original, and twice as hilarious because it's in the middle of a YMCA parking lot. Before we hit the road, Kaitlyn was telling someone of her plans to stop here, and they told her it's "not that cool." In case you have any other filthy liars like that in your life, take it from me, IT IS DEFINITELY THAT COOL.
I also took Kait to one of my favorite spots in the area, the Bahá'í House of Worship in Wilmette. It's always breathtaking, but on this particular day it was as if it was the only place in Chicago where Spring was a reality. Everywhere else was still grey and barren, but somehow the area around the temple was blooming and lush:
Saturday was the first time that I've ever actually gone inside, but they don't allow photos in there so you'll have to visit to see. It was totally worth it, and I think it was 100% better because of the no-photo policy. No phones can be out at all, and you cannot talk in there at all. Not even quietly. It was so peaceful. I'm totally a phone person who hates on old fogeys who are like "in my day, you couldn't just reach anyone at any old time! And people knew how to connect without SCREENS" and all that antiquated bullshit, but this WAS really nice.
I've lived in Chicago for nearly 30 years and I feel like it just never gets boring. I always want to go do weird and new things on the weekends, so if you have any suggestions, throw them my way! My favorite way of finding things lately has been following a ton of Chicago instagrammers, people with like 100,000 followers whose entire feeds are cool shit in this city, so if you have any of those I should be following, I'll take those too!
And for a more comprehensive view of my favorite things about this place, check out The Comprehensive R/P Guide To Chicago.
PS: Thanks for featuring r/p again, Apartment Therapy! On a day where I had so much laundry I went to Target to buy new tights instead of going to Bubbleland, no less.