Friday, July 07, 2006

A Trip to the City {Part Two}

Another popular attraction of Millinnuem Park is the sculpture called, "The Bean." It is a silver bean-shaped structure which took several years to complete. The metal used in the sculpture was welded together to form the shape and through some painstakingly long process none of the welding is visible, thus producing a perfectly smooth, shiny surface. If you walk underneath "The Bean" and look up, the undulating shape forms an unusual optical illusion as you can see in the photo above. We rested a bit at that point and listened to a rehearsal of the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra which performs in the evenings for free. One of the jewels of Grant Park is our famous Buckingham Fountain, which actually is more spectacular at night when the water is lit up with colored lights.Of course no trip to the city is complete without a trip to the Art Institute of Chicago. I could spend days wandering around in this museum. I used to love when we would take classes on field trips here and watch the children's faces when the docents explained some of the art work.And finally, a trip to another Chicago landmark...Marshall Field and Company. This store holds years and years of memories for me. My mother and I would ride the elevated train and subway to go shopping here before the days of indoor shopping malls. {I do believe I am dating myself with that comment!} My parents, my brother and I would come here every year a few days before Christmas to eat lunch in the famous Walnut Room. We would sit at tables surrounding the gigantic Christmas tree, where for years I would order {to my mother's horror} a plain hot dog. Frango Mints, Uncle Mistletoe, the decorated Christmas windows all were a huge part of our childhood Christmas memories. But alas, Marshall Field's has been sold to Macy's and so this sign, which has been above the entrance for decades, will soon be replaced marking the end of an era. : (

4 comments:

PJ said...

That is one thing I really missed when we lived on base up there...not throughly visiting Chicago...(of course we were there during the winter) Thank you for the tour..looked like a beautiful day with wonderful things to look at! (the bean was really neat!)

Marieke said...

Hi Jeanne, thanks for commenting on my blog. Love the drawing of yourself! Good idea. I have been thinking of putting a simple one up to, but this one (seems :-)) very realistic!

Lilli said...

Love that bean!

The fountain looks very French, like it would be at Versailles.

My only trip to Chicago was in '89 on St Pat's day. I went to the Art Institute and Marshall Fields, where I bought a gorgeous watch made of little silver beads :)

Jeanne said...

Lilli, you have a good eye with your comment about Buckingham Fountain. Edward H. Bennett designed the fountain to represent Lake Michigan with four sea horses to symbolize the four states that touch the lake: Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana and Michigan. Bennett attributed the design specifically to the influence of the Latona Basin in Louis XIV's gardens at Versailles.

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