I always enjoyed walking around the city of Chicago in the winter. The long stretches of concrete and skyscrapers felt more imposing and present than in the summer months. If you could withstand the sudden gusts of wind that paid no mind to how many layers of clothing you were wearing — you were in for one astonishing walk.
Blue-greys reflected off every window, steam rose from the sidewalk vents and sewers, and the people were in even more of a rush than usual — forming tight clusters of wool jackets and puffy coats all headed onward to whatever their location. I especially enjoyed these walks in the most brutal of winter months — January.
In January I had regular classes in seminary and commuted down every morning and made the mile and a half walk from the train station to the school near the lakefront. I took note of the familiar faces I would see every day. The Salvation Army volunteer always stood at the end of a long indoor tunnel handing out their magazine for donations.
An older grandmotherly type passed out resumes under the nude stone formations of the lyric opera building. And countless others demanded ones attention — beggars, street musicians, campaigners and protesters, confident evangelists, and peddlers of street market goods. All the while — everyone else just wanted to get to somewhere warmer. Read the rest of this entry »