|Sitting at the Museum Cafe at the Art Institute.|
We did our time-honored activities, such as pub trivia, listening to NPR in the morning and doting over my friend’s adorable dog.
The heat shortened everybody’s fuse and one night when the apartment was filled with awkward silence, I decided to go out by myself. I went to a jazz club Al Capone used to frequent. I wouldn’t have forgiven myself if I’d left Chicago without going to a jazz club. At the Green Mill I drank a couple glasses of red wine and talked to friendly people.
|Sue, the largest and most complete T Rex at the Field Museum|
Since I've been back home, I’m constantly capturing trees and flowers with my camera. (I didn't see many of those in Qatar.) I’m still feeling fortunate for being in a country where individualism reigns and hang-ups over sex cannot determine the taboos for everyone. For a while, I was still taken aback when I saw short shorts and revealing blouses. And I’m still adjusting, although I think I've finally settled in. For a couple weeks, when I heard a noise in the distance, I expected it to be followed by the call to prayer.
My week in Chicago, although way too hot, gave me reason to go back. I want to go back to the Art Institute and see everything. So far, that museum has the most impressive collection I've seen: a plethora of paintings by all the great masters and statues and artifacts from ancient Greece, Rome and the Byzantine Empire. I would also like to explore more ethnically diverse neighborhoods. And of course I want to check out Quimby’s again and go to more jazz clubs.