Small Town Chicago…

It was an interesting day on Tuesday when I felt that the whole world had collapsed in one single point :).

I was on a mission to show the best Chicago has to offer; my friend’s Dad was visiting Chicago for the first time. As it always happens, I can’t let somebody else showing our beautiful city to the visitors – what if they will do it a wrong way?!

I took them to the Chicago Fine Arts Building – one of the tourist attractions, which is severely underrated. I love to show it to the visitors, because they can’t believe such a lovely place is right here, in the very center of the city, and they would never know it exists. Showing the ancient man-operated elevator is one of my favorite attractions: you press the elevator button, but what this button really does, it rings the bell, which signals the elevator operator to bring it down. Then you ask to bring you to the very top floor and start your descent down, touring each level on your way.

On one of the floors we’ve entered the Sheet Music store, and I was walking around, showing my guests the selection, and talking to one of the store associates. And then another associate called: Excuse me, are you Henrietta? I’ve turned around, puzzled, because I could not recognize him, and he continued: I used to come to your Postgres meetups!

That was just mind-bowing! I’v replied to him, laughingly: That is wrong! That’s from the other part of my life! And he was: I am so sorry for the intrusion, but you know, this is the other part of my life as well! I take music lessons here, and also help in this store. I said – it’s alright, it just feels not real, when different parts of my world come together.

Then a couple of floors lower we stopped at the Dial, the new used books store, which has replaced the old one, “with the cat.” I love the space, and the owners as well, so we’ve entered and walked around. And when we were about to exit, I thanked the owner, and told him, how I am glad they’ve opened this store, how much I like everything about it, and that my sone has written an article about it

— My son’s name is Igor, do you remember him?

— Of cause! I know him! He’s great!

And after we’ve exited the building, we went for dinner to the Gage, the reservation and all arrangements were made by Vlad, who in his own words “knows a couple of people there.” I wonder, whether there is any at all establishment in Chicago, where Vlad does not know “somebody.” In any case, my usual “it’s good to be Vlad’s Mom” moment followed. There was a bottle of wine from Vlad delivered to our table, and a couple of people stopped by with the questions, “Do you remember me? We met at Vlad’s house.”

… When people ask me, why I still live in Palatine and do not move to the city, one of the first things I tell is that “everybody knows me there, and everybody still remembers I am Vlad’s Mom!” I guess it’s close to becoming true in Chicago 🙂

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