A Toast to Chicago

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boatbridge
boatbridge
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cityfarm
loop
loop

Today I'm off on an impromptu visit to my most beloved city in the US: Chicago, Illinois.

Though I was ready to move on after living in the city for almost five years when I finally packed my bags for good this past August, it was heartbreaking to say goodbye to a place that held so many memories and new experiences in my life.

memories4
memories4
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memories5
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memories6
lollamargemejord
lollamargemejord
marathon
marathon

It was the first place that made me feel like a true adult, making my own decisions and living in big girl apartments.

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apartment1
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apartment2
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apartment3

It gave me my first real professional opportunities and introduced me to so many great mentors.

CSMagazine
CSMagazine
WGN
WGN
redeye
redeye

It established public transportation as my main mode of getting around. At first, commuting kind of freaked me out--especially after an episode of wandering around for three hours trying to find the Red Line and somehow winding up in Greektown from Union Station when I first went to the city by myself--but eventually I got the hang of it.

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trainladies
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train2

It taught me how to be responsible, caring for a pet all on my own and keeping on top of paying my bills.

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dorian1
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dorian

And it showed me so much beauty in every day.

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goodmorningsunshine
downtownchicago
downtownchicago
beauty
beauty

Above all else, it brought so many incredible people into my life who have helped shape me into who I am today.

northavegirls
northavegirls
mejacbrissi
mejacbrissi
girls
girls
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friends2
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friends4
friends
friends

Can't wait for this weekend full of friends and fun in a city I adore so much. Chicago, I raise my glass to you.

metrump
metrump
chicagoskyline
chicagoskyline