Saturday, November 1, 2014

US trip 2014: Chicago, the Windy City!!

Hello again guys!

Here's the second part of my trip to the US! I had started noticing that my suitcase was a bit small for ALL THE BOOKS and that I had to be very careful with my book shopping from now on! I already had 4 books and the suitcase was looking rather difficult to close!

I arrived in Chicago on Friday at nearly 4 pm but the traffic was quite mad and I was the last one in the shuttle to be left at the hotel. That also meant I had an interesting conversation with the driver, who told me that I shouldn't be surprised that people were nice to me when I go to places because I am a nice person. Context: I was telling him about how nice people were in Dublin when I went there 2 years back, and he said that it might not be that people are nice where I go, but that I'm a nice person and people react to that. All the conversation started when he was telling me about the river being dyed green for the St Patrick's Parade!

Checked-in and decided to have some dinner at the hotel restaurant and there and then I was reminded of how big the portions are in the US! Then I decided to enjoy my quite awesome room at the Holiday Inn and finish reading the latest Chicagoland Vampires book, Blood Games, to get in the right mindset to visit the Windy City!

Day 2: Meeting with Brooke & Sheika!

I had been communicating with my friends in Chicago via either Twitter DM or Facebook message, so happy that I got the room with wi-fi included! Brooke has been a friend of mine for over 6 years, I think probably 7! All since I started to fall in love with the handmade movement and became a huge supporter, and she's one amazingly talented lady that makes awesome bags! She's the one that made the bag that I always use as my cabin luggage!

Brooke picked me up at me hotel and she took me first to the Bean, cause that's the place to go when you go to Chicago according to one of the Haematology residents, so I decided to give it a try!

Then we did a bit sightseeing dowtown and then Brooke took me to a cool area up north where we had luch at an Irish pub, did some walking around and visited some really cool shops!

While we were having lunch, Sheika, another of our friends from the handmade forums that now lives in Chicago, said that she could meet us for dinner, so we returned downtown, got lost driving around trying to find a Lush shop and finally parked to meet up with Sheika for dinner and chatting!

It was seriously fantastic to finally meet these awesome ladies I had been friends for so long and be able to chat with them, talk books with Brooke because she's also a huge reader & book lover and talk art and photography with Sheika, that is an amazing artist and cartoonist!

Day 3: Meeting Sarah & Sharon!

My third day in Chicago started as usual with me checking Google maps in my room to make sure I knew where I was going, even if both NY and Chiago aren't all that difficult to navigate given their grid set up downtown!

I was meeting Sarah, a fellow book lover and Sharon, the author of A Mad Wicked Folly (a book that I highly recommend to everyone, but specially if you like historical books and or with a feminist feel to them!) to walk around Chicago, have some coffee, lunch and buy books!

We decided to go for lunch at the Artists' Cafe and before entering Sharon discovered that The Fine Arts Building was open to the public and we could see the theater that was undergoing renovations and also ride the hand-cranked elevator and visit all the floors on our way down, even the Venetian patio, and so we all went inside for a visit! Sharon has a lot of love for the building and had so many stories to tell, it was heaps of fun! And if she ends up putting the building in a later book, Sarah and myself will know how she was inspired! ;)

Lunch happened right after the visit and I decided to go for something very Chicagoan, a Chicago dog! That was rather yummy and that was big enough that I couldn't finish! But neither did Sharon with hers, so I don't feel as bad! ;)

After lunch, Sharon had to run back home but she signed our books before leaving! (mine had travelled all the way back from Spain!) and then Sarah and I took off in search of bookstores to complete my to-buy list! BUT not before she gave me the ARC of Liars INC that Paula Stokes had sent her to give me!! *ALL THE FLAILS*

So after all my flailing and squealing, we headed to the closest B&N to buy some books and I find all 3 I wanted right away, but Sarah didn't buy anything there so we decided to head to another B&N up north that would also be close to Sprinkles, the cupcakes bakery with a CUPCAKE ATM!!

I really need one of those nearby to where I live, no matter the time, you can always have access to a tasty cupcake! Seriously, Chicago WINS!!

And then back to the hotel! We totally forgot to get some pics taken with Sharon but Sarah and me took a pic of both of us with our Pivot Book Totes, but Sarah doesn't want her face all over the internet, and after the KH debacle, I truly do not blame her at all!!

And here are the three last books that I bought, because it was quite a game of tetris to pack the suitcase with the 7 extra books! B&N editions of Eleanor & Park and Ruin & Ruising and the new hardback of Throne of Glass with the pretty paperback cover!!

And the next day, early up to get on the bus that will take me to Wisconsin, my last stop on this US trip! But that will once again be a story for another day!


  1. Whoop whoop! You look like you had such a blast! I loved a Mad wicked Folly!! I think you actually recommended it to me. I'm once again so sad i didnt get to hang out with you but we will always have BEA!! *hugs*

    1. I probably did, I've been pushing that book on everyone since I read it cause I LOVE IT TO BIIIITS!!
      I had a wonderful time and was the trip I needed for my emotional well-being for sure!

  2. I must have missed the NYC post. I will go looking for it. I am so happy your entire trip went well. :)

    1. It went up on Thursday, La! And yeah, the trip was quite awesome! =D

  3. Adorable! And OMG that hotdog looks good ;D

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  4. Sigh. <3 It sounds like you had such an amazing time :D And I am so so jealous. Yet so happy for you too. <3 Love reading about everything you did in America :) Thank you so much for sharing about it Pili. <3

    1. I did Carina dear! Thank you so much for always visiting the blog!

  5. You did everything I would do if I was in Chicago. Next time you need a Portillo's Italian Beef as well... Glad you had such a wonderful trip!!!!!

    1. Next time I'm sure we'll correct that, twin!! =D


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