My first Free weekend.. – Au Pair Adventures

.. was totally awesome!

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So we get one weekend of every month. Or at least I do, some lucky Au Pairs have every weekend off but whatever.

Anyway, this weekend was my first free weekend. It started on Friday night when I went out with 3 other 21+ year old Au Pairs. The original plan was to go to downtown Chicago and pick a bar when we get there. But one of the girls that I was going with suddenly had to work ’til later and that made it hard to go downtown because we would have to get the last train and it would only give us like an hour and a half to actually be there. So what we decided to do is pick a bar that’s about halfway between where she lives and where I live. Downside of this plan was that we both had to drive, so no drinking. But hey, who needs alcohol to have fun? Not me.

So I get there at 09:30 pm. Well, the GPS told me I had arrived and I had to look twice to actually spot the place as it turned out this little dive bar about the size of two average sized living rooms. It’s the kind of place where everyone knows everyone and they notice immediately when someone new shows up. When you’re in that situation, one of two things can happen: 1) you get stared at intimidatingly until you get the hell out of there, or 2) they welcome you with open arms. Thankfully, this place was definitely the latter. I wasn’t even in the door when the people who were smoking outside started talking to me. ‘Over the hill is 50 right?!’.

As soon as I walked in, I knew that I was gonna love the place. Yeah it was small and dark and basically the epitome of a dive bar but it was also a place where people would come up and talk to you, ask where you come from and just hang out with you. I was by myself for that first 30 minutes while I was waiting for my friends, but I wasn’t bored for a second. One woman came up to me (while severely intoxicated) and insisted that I talk to people, and flirt with the boys and have a good time. It was so funny. Then after my friends got there, it only got better. We told the guys there that we were Au Pairs from Brazil, Austria, France and the Netherlands and that shit spread like wildfire. A lot of people wanted to talk to the ‘foreign girls’. It was awesome. At some point a guy came up to the group and asked ‘which one of you is from Amsterdam’, and then started a discussion with me about the differences between Heineken in Amsterdam and Heineken in the US.

Anyway, we spent the night laughing, singing along to rock/metal music (and the occasional Miley Cyrus song – don’t ask me why. It was very weird hearing that between AC/DC, the Offspring and Twisted Sister), talking to the patrons and playing darts. It was such a good night that we decided to make it a Friday night tradition.

So that was Friday night. On Saturday I was supposed to have a Lord of the Rings marathon with my friend Saskia. But it was snowing so hard that after an hour at her place, I was like I need to go home or else the engine is either going to freeze of I’m going to be snowed in and I’m not really cool with either of those. Also the roads are going to be ridiculous. So I ended up having to go home early. It was the right choice though. There was a car collision right in front of me on the drive back. Luckily no one got hurt or anything but it would only be getting worse from then on. So I ended up spending Saturday night in my bed, which was actually fine with me. It gave me some time to like recharge my batteries.

And then today I went to the Field Museum with my other friend, Anneke. If you don’t know this place, it is the Natural History museum of Chicago and it is absolutely amazing. For one, it is featured in my favourite series of all times – the Dresden Files – in the book Dead Beat, the main character, Harry Dresden, rides the zombified skeleton of the famous Sue. Sue is the pride and glory of the Field Museum, it being the world’s largest, most complete and best preserved Tyrannosaurus.

Sue!
Sue!

The museum was so big that it is really hard to see everything in one day without your feet falling off. So we only ended up seeing the Ancient Americas display, Afrika, Mammals and Ancient Egypt. There was loads more to see and do, including the temporary exhibition of the World Fare, which I really want to see next time! I ended up spending way too much money (including a permanent subway ticket – something like an Oyster Card or an OV-card if you’re from the UK of the NL – and, food, and entrance fee I spent like $90) so I don’t have anything for the rest of the week but I don’t regret any of it. I absolutely loved it there and I want to go back soon. The Shedd aquarium is really close to there too and I’ll be going there soon, too. Being all touristy and shit. I love it.

Here are a few pictures to close off with. I took like 200 today. What? Don’t look at me like that.

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Author: EMK

Just blogging away in my free time while I try to make something of my life

2 thoughts on “My first Free weekend.. – Au Pair Adventures”

  1. I went to that museum YEARS ago. Must have been at least 11 or 12 years ago. I remember a little of the Egypt exhibit, and of course Sue. Also I bought a set of DVDs on the Galapagos, focusing primarily on the sea life. I’ll have to see if we have that around still…

    Welcome to every bar in the Mid-West! Country bars at least. I’m sure city bars are different, but I’ve never been subjected to them. I always have mixed feeling about them. For example, there is one in the town I live in (population about 2,300) where there is always the same three people there I think. That’s just what they do with themselves- spend their times at a bar, drinking, talking about nothing that matters. Their is a certain small town charm to it, but after awhile it becomes much more depressing. Of course, once you get to a REAL real country bar, the novelty returns. (Rusk County bars are something else!) Nothing like a roof that is more decoration that utility, a door never quite able to shut, and a one armed one legged bartender.

    I’m pretty sure every big name beer here is watered down. At least that’s what every European I’ve heard has said. You have to go to the micro brewery to get something more potent. There’s one ’round here that makes a bunch of really weird German beers. Chocolate and cayenne pepper stout anyone? (Does not go well with fish tacos, not bad at all otherwise.)

    Another thing you may want to consider looking at in Chicago is Navy Pier. Never been there personally, but my ma and dad went there on a date, and loved it. Probably something to do once it gets warmer. I think there’s a fairly good theatre scene as well, if you are into that. There’s blues and folk music too I’m almost sure. There’s gotta be some blues still! An entire style of blues originates in Chicago! Not sure if you are into either, but it’s something to consider.

    -Cain

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