Friday, December 07, 2007
The first snowstorm
Here's a little from last Saturday. I've got a lot to look forward to this weekend, but today's one of those gray days where I'm waiting to hear from people, and restless, and just need to get out and get a few photos even if it's gray. But first...I got a good early start Saturday and had my first trip into this ruined foundry. There's another building near it, but I chose the ones that are completely open--because they were obviously burned/destroyed some time ago. Easy to get in (and surprisingly, easy to get into a huge adjacent construction site, though I didn't have time for that), and a cop car drove by on the street when I was visible and nothing happened. I love the extent of ruin here. One of the few places where I was much more afraid of the structural damage than of running into people. But nothing happened.
It's near another place I'd wondered about for a while, but after slipping under a fence and starting to walk around the buildings, I heard dogs barking. Locked inside a building, but still, that's scary, and I didn't want to draw attention to myself so I beat it. I had my second meal of the week at the excellent new-ish diner, The Depot. Apple pancakes and hot chocolate--I seriously want to order that meal again just so I can take a photo of it. Wonderful, and only $6 total.
I took a couple buses to a factory demolition. It wasn't all being demolished; the fact that the other buildings were occupied that day restricted me to just getting shots through the fence. Luckily, I'd heard a rumor of a spot nearby, and easily got into two buildings of some abandoned auto repair place.
Not much to see there, but I went upstairs to the offices, and climbed on an upper level of a garage because if I see stairs that look even remotely safe, I'll climb them. It's always nice to get a chance to be alone in a huge empty abandoned space, but the only real excitement here is that this is my first abandonment on the north side. Okay, technically the northwest side, but still cool. (I've done a factory that's about 300 north, but that's really the West Side.)
So I'd gotten my photos for the day done by 1:00--not bad. And it's good I was done, because as I excited the garage, the snow was coming down. I walked a few blocks to a nearby Target and was snow-soaked and ruddy when I got there. I quickly bought a new cell phone. That's my THIRD ONE this year. I'd gone on a long drive with DK the day before, to show him some of the Northwest Side. We didn't go to American Science and Surplus, saw Superdawg but I decided not to push him to go there because he doesn't care for Chicago hot dogs. didn't eat at the Edgebrook Coffee Shop but did go to Cut Rate Toys, went to Oak Park where we ate at a favorite diner, the Cozy Corner, and I showed him the great bookstore The Book Table. Sometime in all that my water bottle spilled in my bag, and I'd ruined my second phone this year.
So, another $40 down the drain. I got a new one at Target--they keep changing the basic model, so this is my 3rd different phone in 7 months--and waited for the Diversey bus. FOR A WHOLE HOUR. I'm not sure I've ever had a bus wait top an hour before. It was snowing, but not that bad. That was my view for an hour. I had a nice warm visit to Powell's bookstore on Lincoln (20% discount day), a 30 minute wait for the Lincoln bus, later a 20 minute for the Damen bus. Ugh. Someday the CTA will learn about the concept of "precipitation" and plan accordingly...
I got a few shots at the Irving Park Brown Line station, its next-to-last day before closing for rehab. Got the phone turned on at the Lawrence & Damen phone store. Sadly, I hadn't actually SAVED my numbers anywhere, so I'm starting from scratch again. At least I treated myself to a nice hot dinner first at Ravenswood Grill, one of my favorites. (Yes, two restaurants in one day, rather indulgent.) I seriously couldn't believe how good the mashed potatoes and gravy were. I'd planned to see my roommate's band play that night, but the thought of taking four more buses that night was excruciating. Just walking two blocks on the icy sidewalk from the Kimball bus was frightening enough. I turned in early, for a day of exploring another abandoned hospital the next day...