Sunday, March 12, 2006

In conclusion

A summary of my Chicago favorites, in no particular order:
  1. The people. I'm so unaccustomed to people in Seattle making eye contact, that when I first got to Chicago I thought I must have something large and hairy hanging from my nose. What other explanation could there be for all these people looking and - gasp! - even smiling as they walked past. Imagine my surprise when they actually engaged me in conversation...
  2. The Art Institute. It's purty.
  3. The ubiquity of blue cheese stuffed olives in the martinis. Very few places in Seattle offer this delicacy.
  4. Options. People appreciate dressing up to go out; they also appreciate dressing down to go out. Sometimes you feel like a nut; sometimes you don't. Seattle needs more nuts.

This afternoon at the grocery store, I kept smiling at the people sharing my aisle. After about the fifth person quickly averted my gaze - or simply stared me down, as if my smile had been misinterpreted as a challenge to a street fight - I was beginning to accept that the time had come to revert back to Seattle anti-socialism. But then a woman struck up a conversation with me about the pros and cons of the various salsas we were both studying.

Thank you Salsa Woman, for showing me there's hope for Seattle yet! (And thanks also for the excellent salsa recommendation!)

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