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Old 30th May 2010, 12:20   #1
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Default Windy Chicago - Mid May

Folks,

This was my third visit to the US
  • Destination-Chicago
  • Duration - 15-21May
  • Airline - Etihad(chose this one after some good experiences last time)
  • Overall Experience -
Having flown Etihad before,I chose them again this time.

Barring some minor hiccups at Mumbai Check In(they were too fussy about hand baggage weighing 2kg extra despite my checkin baggage being less than half of the allowance),the passage was smooth.

EY205 Mumbai-Abu Dhabi was a breeze-Airbus320 - arrival 0610 hrs Terminal1.

AUH Airport has some telephones from where local calls to Abu Dhabi are free.There's free Internet access too :-)

Oasis Cafe offered some decent standard breakfast(eggs,toast,baked beans,hashbrowns,sausages) for AED25.Leave out what you don't want.

Costa at Terminal1 Gate Level has better stuff.

EY151 Abu Dhabi-Chicago

Four check points before you board - first is to check your boarding pass,second to check your docs,third is Security and final at boarding

Two Captains and two Senior First Officers are on board.

Departure Abu Dhabi ON TIME 1020 hrs arrival Chicago O'Hare 1630 hrs after a long long 16 hrs.They feed you well(two meals plus beverages plus snack plus ice cream)

Excellent flight - Airbus 340-600.


O'Hare International Airport

Had a feel of one of teh busiest airports in the world - took 2.5 hrs to clear the immigration as the queue was loooooong.

By the time I reached the baggage belt,our baggage was off the belt and another Aircraft's baggage was on.

A few guys approached you offering to transport you ;just said No Thanks.

Took a cab from the taxi queue and was at the Chcago South Loop Hotel on 26th Street in 30 minutes.$43

Chcago South Loop Hotel

The hotel was neat

Room was big and well appointed.

Ordered some pizza from Giordanos and then dozed off.

Drawbacks:No attached restaurant,no kettle.

If you even want a cuppa coffee,you've to wait for the OnSite Cafe to open at 0730 hrs.
Attached Thumbnails
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0713.jpg  

Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0712c.jpg  

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Old 30th May 2010, 12:34   #2
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McCormick Place West Building - Just five minutes from the Hotel and hosting a large International Conference.


Had a tough time getting sleep these four days.Food became an issue on Day2(16 May) when I dozed off at 6pm local time to get up all groggy at 12 midnight.A packet of chips was all I had for "dinner"
Attached Thumbnails
Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0222.jpg  

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0223.jpg  

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0224.jpg  

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0225.jpg  


Last edited by vigsom : 30th May 2010 at 12:41. Reason: addn
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Old 30th May 2010, 13:04   #3
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Took some time off on 18 May to explore some of Chicago

Wanted to take a Water Taxi from Shedd Aquarium but then discovered they weren't operating that day.So just saw the lake

The Shedd Aquarium
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0720.jpg
Skyline
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0721.jpg
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0723.jpg

Lake Michigan

Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0724.jpg
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0725.jpg

N Michigan Avenue
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0727.jpg
Windy Chicago - Mid May-img_0728.jpg
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Old 30th May 2010, 13:18   #4
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Good. Guess the long time for immigration from any gulf country would be the norm of the day!
When I went to O' Hare in 2004, I flew Air india (always fly Air india abroad except emirates once while coming back from glasgow). I was across the immigration very quickly.
Chicago - the city of blues. And you had problems with food! A trip to Devon street was what you needed!
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Old 30th May 2010, 13:23   #5
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Left Chicago on 19th(a bright sunny day) to start my return leg.

Took United 688 to New York,stopped over for two days before taking EY100 to Abu Dhabi.

Good learning overall as this was my first time ALL ALONE in the US.

In The Cab To O'Hare

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0230.jpg
Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0231.jpg

On Board Etihad EY100 over Scandinavia

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0232.jpg

The In Flight Entertainment Screen

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0233.jpg

At 37000 feet in the A340-500

Windy Chicago - Mid May-imag0234.jpg
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Old 2nd June 2010, 07:33   #6
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for anyone who wants clear advice on how to move out of this airport to town without fuss,and also tips on moving around,ask me.

This was my first time all by myself in a foreign land,so have a few tips.

I was hosted in all my eight overseas trips before this;so had no probs
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Old 2nd June 2010, 10:25   #7
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Oh my. It's been quite some time since I made a trip abroad, now I get the craving again!

I have fond memories of O'Hare. Have you visited the area where they have kept information about the man (O'Hare) on display, along with a reconstructed fighter jet that he flew?

On one trip I left my then recently purchased Pentax point-and-shoot camera in the waiting area of a terminal at O'Hare, and then ran back there after a quite a while to claim it. The attendant there asked me what brand, I said Pentax. Then she asked me where I purchased it from. I gave her the name of the store in Detroit. She gave me the camera promptly - she had found the bill of purchase inside its case!
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Old 2nd June 2010, 21:41   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
Have you visited the area where they have kept information about the man (O'Hare) on display, along with a reconstructed fighter jet that he flew?
No.

I departed O'Hare Terminal 1(United) to LaGuardia.Where is this info BTW?Just curious
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Old 2nd June 2010, 22:29   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
On one trip I left my then recently purchased Pentax point-and-shoot camera in the waiting area of a terminal at O'Hare, and then ran back there after a quite a while to claim it. The attendant there asked me what brand, I said Pentax. Then she asked me where I purchased it from. I gave her the name of the store in Detroit. She gave me the camera promptly - she had found the bill of purchase inside its case!
Events like that make the day! Especially if it's a camera that you lost and found!
I did my own bit of Sherlock holmes when I lost my tripod in London. Interesting story there. Will reserve it for a travelogue.
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Old 3rd June 2010, 09:10   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vigsom View Post
No.

I departed O'Hare Terminal 1(United) to LaGuardia.Where is this info BTW?Just curious
The O'Hare memorabilia and restored fighter plane are kept near Terminal 2. Edward O'Hare was a world war II hero, a fighter pilot who lost his life in combat.

Before I made my second US trip, I happened to read a romanticised tale about O'Hare that was circulating via emails. The story must have its share of exaggeration, but you look up wikipedia for the characters involved in this story and you will know that much of it is true. This story however inspired me to visit Terminal 2 and see the memorabilia.

Reproducing the story here. There's a lot of fact and maybe some fiction in it, but believe me, it's worth reading:

Story number one:

World War II produced many heroes. One such man was Lieutenant Commander Butch O'Hare.

He was a fighter pilot assigned to an aircraft carrier Lexington in the South Pacific.

One day his entire squadron was sent on a mission. After he was airborne, he looked at his fuel gauge and realized that someone had forgotten to top off his fuel tank. He would not have enough fuel to complete his mission and get back to his ship. His flight leader told him to return to the carrier. Reluctantly he dropped out of formation and headed back to the fleet. As he was returning to the mothership, he saw something that turned his blood cold. A squadron of Japanese bombers were speeding their way toward the American fleet. The American fighters were gone on a sortie and the fleet was all but defenseless. He couldn't reach his squadron and bring them back in time to save the fleet. Nor, could he warn the fleet of the approaching danger. There was only one thing to do. He must somehow divert them from the fleet.

Laying aside all thoughts of personal safety, he dove into the formation of Japanese planes. Wing-mounted 50 caliber's blazed as he charged in, attacking one surprised enemy plane and then another. Butch weaved in and out of the now broken formation and fired at as many planes as possible until finally all his ammunition was spent. Undaunted, he continued the assault. He dove at the planes, trying to at least clip off a wing or tail, in hopes of damaging as many enemy planes as possible and rendering them unfit to fly. He was desperate to do anything he could to keep them from reaching the American ships. Finally, the exasperated Japanese squadron took off in another direction. Deeply relieved, Butch O'Hare and his tattered fighter limped back to the carrier. Upon arrival he reported in and related the event surrounding his return. The film from the camera mounted on his plane told the tale. It showed the extent of Butch's daring attempt to protect his fleet. He had destroyed five enemy bombers. That was on February 20, 1942, and for that action he became the Navy's first Ace of WWII and the first Naval Aviator to win the Congressional Medal of Honor. A year later he was killed in aerial combat at the age of 29. His home town would not allow the memory of that heroic action to die. And today, O'Hare Airport in Chicago is named in tribute to the courage of this great man. So the next time you're in O'Hare visit his memorial with his statue and Medal of Honor. It is located between terminal 1 and 2.

Story number two:

Some years earlier there was a man in Chicago called Easy Eddie. At that time, Al Capon virtually owned the city. Capone wasn't famous for anything heroic. His exploits were anything but praiseworthy. He was, however, notorious for enmeshing the city of Chicago in everything from bootlegged booze and prostitution to murder. Easy Eddie was Capone's lawyer and for a good reason. He was very good! In fact, his skill at legal maneuvering kept Big Al out of jail for a long time. To show his appreciation, Capone paid him very well. Not only was the money big; Eddie got special dividends. For instance, he and his family occupied a fenced-in mansion with live-in help and all of the conveniences of the day. The estate was so large that it filled an entire Chicago city block. Yes, Eddie lived the high life of the Chicago mob and gave little consideration to the atrocity that went on around him. Eddy did have one soft spot, however. He had a son that he loved dearly. Eddy saw to it that his young son had the best of everything; clothes, cars, and a good education. Nothing was withheld. Price was no object. And, despite his involvement with organized crime, Eddie even tried to teach him right from wrong. Yes, Eddie tried to teach his son to rise above his own sordid life. He wanted him to be a better man than he was. Yet, with all his wealth and influence, there were two things that Eddie couldn't give his son. Two things that Eddie sacrificed to the Capone mob that he could not pass on to his beloved son: a good name and a good example.

One day, Easy Eddie reached a difficult decision. Offering his son a good name was far more important than all the riches he could lavish on him. He had to rectify all the wrong that he had done. He would go to the authorities and tell the truth about Scar-face Al Capone. He would try to clean up his tarnished name and offer his son some semblance of integrity. To do this he must testify against The Mob, and he knew that the cost would be great. But more than anything, he wanted to be an example to his son. He wanted to do his best to make restoration and hopefully have a good name to leave his son. So, he testified. Within the year, Easy Eddie's life ended in a blaze of gunfire on a lonely Chicago street. He had given his son the greatest gift he had to offer at the greatest price he would ever pay.

I know what you're thinking.

What do these two stories have to do with one another?

Well, you see, Butch O'Hare was Easy Eddie's son.

Last edited by pjay_in : 3rd June 2010 at 09:26. Reason: removed html tags and formatting.
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Old 3rd June 2010, 13:20   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
What do these two stories have to do with one another?

Well, you see, Butch O'Hare was Easy Eddie's son.
Thanks for the narration----I did not know either story so far, though most us know about Al Capone.
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Old 3rd June 2010, 15:31   #12
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The stories weren't my narration, I had received it long back by email and did a search on the net now to find it. I copied it here verbatim.
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Old 3rd June 2010, 16:19   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
The stories weren't my narration, I had received it long back by email and did a search on the net now to find it. I copied it here verbatim.
Thanks! I had been to numerous pickups and drops to O'Hare airport but didn't know about this story until now.
Chicago pics brought in lot of my memories about Chicago!
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Old 4th June 2010, 07:26   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pjay_in View Post
The O'Hare memorabilia and restored fighter plane are kept near Terminal 2. Edward O'Hare was a world war II hero, a fighter pilot who lost his life in combat.

So the next time you're in O'Hare visit his memorial with his statue and Medal of Honor. It is located between terminal 1 and 2.
I should have found out ;maybe I could have taken a look on my way back.

Thanks pjay for the info.The stories were like a movie - great.
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