Everyday when I go to work, I’m amazed by the view that we have in front of our hotel. We look out across Lake Shore Drive and behold one of the “Great Lakes”, Lake Michigan presents itself in all its grandeur. Many of our guests that arrive here from around the world always say the same thing…”it looks like the ocean!” And it does! We also get to look across the lake towards downtown Chicago and see the majestic skyline of this great city who’s in the running to host the 2016 Olympics.
Looking out over this view I always want to take a picture. In fact I’ve started bringing my camera to work. The city and the lake have a different look each day. The sky changes color, the water is different shades of blue, the sunlight highlights the skyscrapers downtown differently. Take a look at the architectual details on some of the buildings, like the museums in the area. Many of the buildings are really works of art, the detailed craftmanship on the stone work brings these buildings to life… makes you wish you could be a stone carver and do such wonderful work that will be noticed and marveled at for years and years to come.
By looking at the newer buildings, it seems that many of these artists have long left this world and the canvas thats being painted now is just colored steel and concrete. Many of our guests after enjoying the main attractions in Chicago, start exploring the inner city and begin to see those details that make Chicago special. Now, that could be our unique older buildings, our people, our landscape or even our animal life. Like our special friend that lives here in Hyde Park against all odds away from their home halfway around the world. Their normal enviroment is the Amazon Rain Forest but somehow they have adapted and now call Chicago Hyde Park their home.
If you look up in the larger trees in our neighborhood you will see these nests made up of twigs. In fact, they can be as large as four to five feet in height. When you first see this little green bird that resembles a parrot, you think how in the world can this happen. Usually when you see one, your going to see a dozen or more at a time, as they do stay in flocks. They are called Monk Parakeets. They are the largest parakeet I’ve ever seen. They are fun to watch and their nests actually have room for multiple families in them so their body heat combined helps them survive the cold Chicago winters.
How they got here no one knows for sure. Possibly an escaped pet or a broken cargo container. Either way they are just one of the great things about Chicago that our guests get to enjoy when they stay here. So bring your camera and explore a unique side of Chicago.