You don't see a lot of Italianate mansions in Chicago, which means I creeped around the outside for five minutes like a weirdo. At first I was half-expecting somebody to wander onto the porch and tell me to move along, but then we realized it wasn't a residence anymore.
IT WAS A STORE.
So many antiques were jammed in there that you couldn't move around very well (I kind of wonder how they ever get anything out when somebody purchases?) but I was Having A Moment with the house itself anyway. It's the Noble Hardee mansion, which is apparently the last unrestored grand home in the city. As you can see, the walls and ceiling are in rough shape, but you can tell what a beauty it was in its heyday. I hope somebody can get in there to fix it up eventually.
Some lovely row houses along one of the squares:
The river was beautiful, too. I didn't know that Savannah was a shipping hub until our first morning there when we saw a freight barge sail through. There were assorted boats cruising along all day, which was fun for somebody who lives 30 miles away from the nearest large body of water--and my sister from land-locked Indianapolis. (Also, shout-out to the sky for being so cooperative in this picture.)
Obviously, Forsyth Park was stunning.
There were a lot of independent businesses in the downtown area, including this adorable fabric shop that wins my award for most creative use of hoops to lure in potential customers. (It worked.)
We have a tradition of taking what we call sister-selfies, so there were about 10 pictures that looked exactly like this.
My favorite meal of the trip was from a place called 22 Square. We honestly chose it because it was raining buckets our last day there and we were just looking for the closest thing. It's inside a hotel and not really advertised outside the building (we found it on Yelp, I think?) so had the weather been nicer we wouldn't have ended up there. It's one of those farm-to-table places, which is a concept you NEED to try if you haven't yet. Here, drool over our cheese and crudite plates:
We spent a lot of time in the car (which, sadly, my back didn't appreciate) which meant we got to see a lot of new geography. Both of us typically fly when we travel, so we've been OVER hills and mountains, but never really driven through them. Illinois is extra boring now. Hills: they make a difference.
So that was our trip! It was my first time really experiencing the South, so it was fun to note the little differences between there and here. Like all of the dress-wearing! All the time, everywhere. (And all of the dudes wore plaid button-down shirts.) Everyone was also extremely polite and well-mannered, which, I will admit, is something we could be better about up here. Not that yankees are RUDE, but a cashier said, "Good morning, how are you?" to us our first day there and we were both surprised. It seemed like she was trying not to laugh at us after that, so at least we're a good for a giggle. Haha.
Have you been to Savannah or Nashville? What did you do/see? Are these places on your travel list? What trips do you have coming up this summer?