I remember when I moved from the NW suburbs to Chicago I was completely and utterly excited. It was the single best decision I’ve made in my life (at that point) and I couldn’t have been happier.
I know that moving to a Lincoln Park Brownstone someday is my dream but as I’ve gotten older and I’ve graduated college I’ve realized that Chicago is not going to be home forever. My body will be in another place, although I think that part of my soul will always be here.
When I first moved to Chicago, I remember the moment that it hit me. I was seventeen years old (young as f) and freshly moved into the dorms. My hallmate Nataliya and I were invited to this cool bad ass concert show, and I distinctly remember wearing a bow headband, a floral top, and cute denim shorts and gym shoes to go to this show. I also remember it being not my scene at all and sneaking off outside to stand on the roof-like balcony as everyone stayed inside.
The skyline was there in front of me, a picture perfect panoramic as the lights glittered and sparkled in front of me. The city lights shined against the water and the sky was illuminated by those bright lights. It was the most perfect moment, as Midnight City by M83 (my favorite song) played in my mind.
I’ll never forget that moment.
So, because of that, I decided to write this post and to share my favorite photos I’ve taken of Chicago. Each and every one of these pictures represents a special point in my young adult life and I know that I’m going to look back at these photos and remember amazing adventures and wonderful times.
Whether I’m still here or not.
(PS I snagged these off of Instagram because I didn’t have the raw ones of the throwback images. And I’m kind of weird about cohesiveness!)
The first time I ever took the blue line, I remember that I was taking it to go to Target! I went to go get a can opener because even though my parents and I packed a bunch of stuff I had no can opener to open the food I had in my dorm room! I also fell the first time I took the L because I was a little cocky and didn’t hold on to anything as the train sped off.
The view from my freshman year dorm room. I had a single and lived in the Illinois Medical District. They actually closed down my dorm building after the year I lived in it so it’s office buildings now.
The view from my first apartment in college. It was an absolutely tiny place but I loved the view it had of Rush University Medical Center and all of the buildings in the medical district. I stayed there for a summer before I moved to the apartment that I’d stay in for the rest of college!
The Fourth of July fireworks from the first summer I lived in Chicago. It was probably one of the most amazing sights I’ve ever seen, the bright lights and the skyline!
This is such a touristy picture but I’ve walked down State Street so many times. It was always my perfect place to walk and relax, or shop with my friends. It’s my happy place!
This picture (the original one) was my phone background for so long. It’s the view from North Ave beach at night and it is absolutely beautiful.
One of the first dates Beny took me on was a walk around downtown to get late night cupcakes. That night, we just walked around and talked all night as we walked everywhere and anywhere. It was honestly one of the best nights I’ve had because it was so much fun and I got to see my city in a whole new light! And even though we’re good friends now it doesn’t change the fact that night was one of the coolest dates I’ve been on.
My best friend, Ashley came to visit me in Chicago and her boyfriend took this photo of us (technically I didn’t take it…) but it’s one of my favorite photos! I absolutely love Wicker Park and I took them all around WP to go get some food and drinks.
I took a walk once from North Ave Beach all the way to Navy Pier. It’s one of the most memorable things I’ve done in Chicago, I remember walking and breathing in all of the fresh air as my sandals hit the sand and the sun shone. It was so incredibly fulfilling and relaxing.
And I took a picture of the docks that day! Not many people check out the docks when they go to the beach.
I took this picture on one of the Navy Pier boat tours. I absolutely love going on the lake and sailing around the city. It’s an absolutely beautiful view of the city that you definitely don’t see often.
I took this picture a few months before graduation and always remember how it was right after I sat down and talked with my parents. It was this moment that I realized that I wasn’t going to stay in Chicago forever and that I had the whole world ahead of me. And that I could literally go anywhere and everywhere.
I think that writing this post made me feel incredibly nostalgic. I’ll always cherish these memories, and one day there will be another post just like this dedicated to a new city that I’ll know like the back of my hand.
“Chicago happened slowly, like a migraine. First they were driving through countryside, then, imperceptibly, the occasional town became a low suburban sprawl, and the sprawl became the city.”
― Neil Gaiman
What’s a city that makes you feel at home?