Besides eating everything in sight, D (my husband) and I had the chance to spend some time in our old neighborhood, Bucktown. I can not believe how many new restaurants and shops have opened their doors in the past two years.
Around the time we moved to California, a “neighborhood beautification” project was just starting in the area. I must admit, they have done a fair amount of cleaning up. Bucktown is considered an “up-and-coming”area, chock full of trendy boutiques, amazing restaurants, artists, musicians and strung-out crazies, but becoming more and more gentrified every day as the young professionals swoop in from Lincoln Park looking for housing steals (which definitely aren’t steals anymore, trust me).
Living in an up-and-coming area also meant encountering two signs at the end of my street on my early-morning coffee run (decaf, of course).
The Gallery Café was a sweet little place on the corner serving up yummy egg bagels, smoothies and coffee drinks. The kind of place that always had NPR playing through the speakers, pleasant people behind the counter, and most importantly, a place that shared a corner with some of Chicago’s finest. Mmmm, can’t you just smell it? The aroma of freshly brewed coffee and skank-ass ho. Fantastic. Yep, my neighborhood had a teeny-tiny problem with prostitution. It actually took me weeks to realize that the vehicles idling in my alley at 3 in the morning weren’t psycho murderers awaiting the perfect moment to break into my place and mutilate me. Silly me- those cars were temporarily housing prostitutes while they performed their specialties on nasty dudes. Delicioso!
It was pretty foul walking out to your car in the morning to find a used condom (hey, at least they’re using condoms! safe sex rules!) or two lying on the curb, so as time passed I got really angry about the situation until one day I noticed a flyer on my door. It was informing me of the Bucktown Neighborhood Association’s “Let’s bust the prostitutes doing the deed and chase them out of town with flashlights at 3am” parade. My prayers answered! Sign me up! Kind of sounded a little like Salem, Massachusetts in 1692 to me, but hey, I’m always up for a little neighborly bonding while chasing down hookers in alleys. So, the day finally arrived. I slept in extra-late to ensure full alertness for the hunt. I was so ready to go- look out hoochies! Well, I was ready to go until I decided to drink 6 vodka tonics while out with friends, come home, pass out and apparently unconsciously turn off my alarm when it went off in the middle of night. So much for that.
We managed to take some photos this weekend, although most were taken by my husband after forcibly hogging the camera the ENTIRE time. Click on the photo below to check them out.