My first job in Chicago was a temp job in River North, near downtown. Each day, I took the train in from the suburbs, jumped off and walked the last ten minutes to the office. Somewhere right near where I crossed the river was a chocolate factory, and to this day when I think about walking across that bridge I inevitably smell the warm smell of fresh chocolate.
I loved working downtown. I loved the rush of the people, the smell of the water. I loved feeling cosmopolitan. Everywhere I looked there were young, hip professionals in their slacks and suits and pencil skirts, walking briskly in the direction of everything. Nobody walks slowly in Chicago.
But it was the buildings themselves I loved the most. They tower above you, slabs of awe inspiring glass and concrete. They glitter in the light, casting long shadows as the wind rips off the lake and roars through the streets. They always feel so alien to me – so very far from how I grew up – but in the most exciting and invigorating way.