The main attraction at the park is Cloud Gate, also known locally as "The Bean." It is a public sculpture by British artist Anish Kapoor, and is 66 feet long and 33 feet high. It looks like a giant drop of mercury, and its mirrored surface offers a lovely view of Chicago's skyline. Also in the park is a really interesting and very modern outdoor theatre. Samantha has decided she is going to get married there.
- Paul Cezanne
- Edgar Degas
- VINCENT VAN GOGH (He had a number of paintings at the Institute, but my two favourites were The Bedroom and Self-Portrait. I'm getting giddy just thinking about them...)
- Edouard Manet
- Claude Monet (Another awesome moment. There were so many Monet paintings that I can't begin to count...BUT, the actual, official, famous, BEAUTIFUL Water Lillies was there!)
- Edvard Munch
- Pierre-Auguste Renoir
- Georges Seurat (The famous A Sunday on La Grande Jatte - 1884 was the painting in the film Ferris Bueler's Day Off...)
- Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
- And the list goes on and on and on...
After the museum, a group of us decided to go to the Chicago Zoo. We also decided to walk, not realizing how far of a journey it actually was. Roughly an hour later, we reached our destination. The zoo was fun, and Meag had an interesting encounter with a monkey, but the walk there was spectacular. We travelled along a bike path with Lake Michigan on one side and downtown Chicago on the other. It's easy to forget there is a huge lake nearby when surrounded by countless skyscrapers. There is even a beach, which I'm sure is packed in the summer. If I had more time - and if it didn't rain for the rest of the trip - I would have rented a bike and pedalled as far along the path as possible.
The Willis Tower is the fifth highest building in the world, and it stretches 1451 feet tall. A one minute elevator ride took us to the Sky deck, where we experienced one of the most beautiful views of the city. There are also three glass balconies at one end, and daring individuals can actually step OUT the side of the building. The balconies are glass, and completely enclosed.
So... what to do next. I was standing on a piece of glass off the side of the tallest building I have ever seen to date. There were people all around me freaking out. The building was slightly swaying. I needed to do something both interesting and memorable. I waited until the balcony was empty, and stretched out face down on the glass floor. Beside me, Lauren did the same, and I must say it was AWESOME. In the picture you can actually see through the glass to the ground below. The cars were small... it was slightly frightening... but we did it!