The Lights of Chicago

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Chicago is Pulaski At Night by Andrew Bird. Chicago is fireworks off Navy Pier, watching them from 21 floors up in a condo off the river. Chicago is the wine cafe that plays French music near the Columbus Street Bridge. Chicago is June 2011, leaving behind a broken relationship. It is reading in a park about love. Chicago is August 2011, moving back to Austin to finish school. It is the swaying boats docked off Lakeshore drive. It is standing in line for Garretts popcorn with Stephanie, playing tourist. It is the sweet and spicy drinks at Mercadito, and the ahi tuna tacos in Bucktown. It is visiting in February when it is cold and the wind sucks the air from your lungs, your bones. Chicago is the kayakers during the summer, East of the river. It is walking to Chicago and State for yoga class, and walking back from it. It is heat and humidity in the summer, and snow in December. Chicago is the spinach and artichoke dip with rosemary pita bread at Sweet Water. It is the squeal of metal wheels on tracks at State and Lake. It is packing moving boxes with my grandmother, three years from my first summer in the city, and staring at the night view 46 floors above the sidewalks.  It is sitting next to the window at the condo and looking at the tiny lights and the tiny people, and hearing my mothers voice through the phone, be good to yourself. Chicago is Millennium park and taking photos, and capturing my reflection on the bean, and immortalizing that moment, saying goodbye, goodbye Chicago. Chicago is both a beginning and an end. Both have been beautiful to me.