Most people go on vacations to see, but my family goes to find. Because my family doesn’t have a lot of money, we go on particularly small, one day vacations around Michigan. But every once in awhile, we go on big trips out of state. The point of going on vacations for us is not to be touristy, and just go where everyone else goes. Our family goes to find the best of the city.
Our latest out of state trip was to Chicago. This trip was different from the other ones. Instead of trying to find the coolest places in Chicago, we were going to show my little sister the popular parts of the city. We went to places like the Bean, Magnificent Mile, and the Kris Kindle Market. I remember watching the carolers at the Kris Kindle market and how they made the audience sing. I remember passing the Joffrey Ballet Studio and seeing the students there taking a class through the big windows on the sides of the building. I remember my parents getting angry at my sister and I complaining about how our feet hurt. I remember all these things, but so can a million other people who have been to Chicago.
On this specific trip, my dad had made an imaginary itinerary for us to follow. He planned to go to specific places at specific times on specific days. It was the perfect map for a tourist. With this layout we could hit everything everyone goes to in Chicago. There was no flaw.
Right after our extremely long shopping trip on Magnificent Mile, everyone in the family was really tired. We took a cab back to the hotel to drop off the large load of shopping bags. The family was so beat that we almost passed out on the hotel beds right then and there, but my dad reminded us that we had a reservation at a really nice restaurant. The thought of a large meal perked up my starving family.
The restaurant wasn’t too far from the hotel, so my parents decided that we could walk there. Me and my sister’s feet were hurting like crazy from all the walking we did that day, but we tried to keep as quiet as possible so our parents didn’t get mad. After about 10 minutes of walking, google maps had finally told us that we had arrived at our destination. We looked around to find the actual restaurant, but we couldn’t find it anywhere. There was a lot of construction where we were, so it was hard to find a building number, and there was no one around to help us find the restaurant. This is when the major complaining started. We were tired, our feet hurt and we just wanted to eat.
Finally my dad accepted that we would have to find somewhere else to eat, and that we had to stop trying to find the fancy restaurant. We walked around for a good five minutes and all we found was McDonald’s, Dunkin Donuts, and Chipotle, and the vote was unanimous that we did not come all this way just to eat at a fast food restaurant.
We had almost given up hope until we went down a dark road on the edge of downtown and found a restaurant called “Crepe Bistro”. It wasn’t as good as the restaurant that we had a reservation for, but we all agreed that we were too hungry to pass up the opportunity to eat there. It looked like a pretty amateur from the outside, like something you could probably find anywhere. It wasn’t until we walked in that we noticed this would be the best memory of our vacation.
When I walked in I could smell the crepes they make in the kitchen. There were people laughing and smiling and talking each other’s ears off. The accordion player playing christmas carols greeted us with a big smile. The waiter seated us almost immediately in a cozy little table in the corner of the room. The atmosphere reminded me of somewhere, but I couldn’t tell what it was until my mother said, “it feels like I just walked into France.”
I looked at the menu and the first thing I noticed was how many crepes they had. Whether it was savory or sweet, there were many options for what you could eat. The food was just as perfect as the atmosphere. The warm and flakey crepe bread fit in just right with the warm smiles from the waiters. We all forgot we were in the windy city during our time at Crepe Bistro.
After we finished our meal, we had to take a cab home because we were too full from the ginormous crepes they fed us. When we got back to the hotel, we fell asleep almost immediately. Even though we spent most of our energy on trying to find that fancy restaurant, I think we were all pretty happy we never found it that night.