Most of the sanctuary’s population consists of wolves or wolf/dog hybrids rescued from private owners or situations where the animals’ health or well-being were at risk. I was somewhat surprised to discover, happily so, that it is illegal in many states to own or breed “wolfdogs” — though in some states like Alaska it is, oddly and disappointingly, legal to own a pure wolf. At Wolf Haven, these animals are paired where appropriate and placed in outdoor enclosures. They don’t have free run as they would in the wild, but they do have a high quality of life under the circumstances.
Last weekend people from around the globe gathered to participate in the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos, whose purpose is to raise awareness about the dramatic decline of some of the world’s most iconic megafauna at the hands of men. Seattle marked its second year of marching, with celebrants gathering at Westlake Park in the heart of the city’s downtown shopping district. A smaller crowd than the previous year, those who turned out were still as loud and boistrous in calling for action by both citizens and governments to stem the tide of a global slaughter that could very well see these animals go extinct within our lifetime.
“Tanzania has lost sixty percent of its elephants in the past six years, mainly because of poaching for ivory.”
It had been almost a decade since I was last in Chicago and I was anxious to get back; my primary intent to eat my way through the city. From all reports, Chicago is bursting at the seams these days with highly lauded, inventive, boundary-pushing chefs, and I had a long list of restaurants on my must-try list. When I found out I’d be heading to Chicago for a business trip, I knew there would be some great meals in store for me and my colleagues, even if I wouldn’t be leading the reservations effort.
I’m not going to kid myself; this will never be a three Michelin-star restaurant, ever. We’re so far outside the box. We play loud hip-hop. We do not give a fuck.
-Chef Phillip Foss
Coincidentally, the same week I’d be in Chicago would mark my wedding anniversary with Craig, so we decided to extend and morph the trip into a mini-vacation; because life is short and a few extra days would mean a few more opportunities to eat. I extended my stay through the weekend and Craig booked a flight to join me mid-week when the business part of my trip was complete. My primary task: find a special place to eat for our anniversary with only a few weeks’ notice.
These frustrating idiosyncrasies can make the task of pinning them down with words a hopeless task. The same goes for critiquing food, which is why I’ve also avoided writing about culinary experiences where possible. Perfect example: Next Restaurant and its sister cocktail lounge, The Aviary. I’m staring at the photos I took of our drinks and dinner there and everything looks delicious and inviting. Why then did I leave the table feeling underwhelmed and dissatisfied with that night?
Chicago is a mecca for anyone even slightly interested in American architecture. From innovative, turn of the twentieth century brick warehouses, to iconic art deco towers, to sleek international style skyscrapers, to the post-modern response, and finally to contemporary, cutting-edge building design, the entire history of modern American architecture unfolds before your eyes. With so many important and lesser-known but still fine examples of buildings on every block, there’s nothing like just letting yourself wander the streets on foot and making your own discoveries. But one of the best ways to take it all in, and get a great overview while learning a little bit of the history of Chicago architecture, is by taking an architectural boat tour.
Architecture is the will of an epoch translated into space.
–Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe
It felt like it was time to go back.