Disposable Camera · August & September

December 26, 2018

Welcome to August, also please excuse my thumb the entire month.

 The Illinois State Fair marked the beginning of August. My mom and I never really go on vacation, but we made the trip to Springfield to see Boy George. Springfield is quiet, historic, but full of small town love. Every building tells a story and every person that works in the history buildings has passion for their work. The Illinois State Fair is comparable to the film Babe. It smells like fried food and farm animals. There are horrifying cable cars where your feet dangle like a ski lift, not as sweet as the Fray song. There are games and food stands lining the roads with the exception of the grand stand in the middle of the fair. At the center of it all is the Butter Cow, and it was one of the main attractions we were heading to Central Illinois for. 

Boy George, where do I begin with Boy George. It was the polar opposite of the pure family fun within the state fair. It was larger than life. There is personality packed into each member on the stage, especially the man of the hour. We befriended what would become a wall of 6ft5 men. I awaited the confrontation between my mom and either the man who blocked her view or the lady who used her daughter to get to the barricade. Larger than life, beautiful, unified, and everybody was together in peace enjoying the spectrum of old and new music.

Night at the Illinois State Fair seems to take place in a different dimension. My assumption is that most of the people that stay after hours are the people who have animals competing and they only see each other this time of year, so they spend as much time together as possible, but that's another novel for another day. There is music radiating from several directions and the aroma of beer lingers. There are neon lights, like a carnival, and the grounds are quiet with the exception of the late night tents. The people you pass are stumbling back to their cars. Our car was parked past a row of sleeping cows.

Springfield, let's talk about my state capitol. Coming from a suburb twenty minutes south of Chicago, a trip to Central Illinois is surreal because their 'downtown' is not as built up as ours is. It's beautiful. There is history around every corner and there are moments I took a second to realize I was inside of the house that Abraham Lincoln once lived in. We were taken around his home by park rangers who explained every room and it's memorial moments.

There is simplicity in walking a few blocks and having the Capitol building in site the entire time. We went on the tour to see where Senate and Congress have sessions and where the Governor's office is, as well as receive a history of the art within the building, including the dome ceiling.

Our final historic stop was Lincoln's Tomb at Oak Ridge Cemetery. While driving through the cemetery, there are signs directing you to Lincoln, but it's impossible to miss. Underneath where he stands in the photo below, you enter and walk through to see his final burial spot, along with Mary Todd Lincoln and three of their four sons. His son, Robert, is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
It's as overwhelming as it is beautiful. 

On a lighter note, I saw Judas Priest with tickets on the main level for free. I know nothing about Judas Priest, nor do I know any of their songs, but I did watch Rob Halford ride onto the stage in a leather jacket, on his motorcycle. It's the most punk rock thing I have ever seen.

There are woods on the drive to work that I love. It was close to raining and the atmosphere is full of gloom. Petrichor fills the air. It's early afternoon, nobody is on the road. 

From home to the city, this is the primary view when driving into Chicago at night time. There is an ocean of cars you're between because everybody is trying to get to the city at night. You hear car horns, music from other cars, and the red line reaching stops outside of the loops. After miles of turns under bridges and highways, you see the skyline before dispersing onto either Lake Shore Drive, or west towards Chinatown. 

After attending the Lil Phag & Dr. Woke Rap Matinee, there was a day of exploring ahead at the beach. Montrose Beach is located on the north side of Chicago, near Lincoln Park. It was autumn, so there weren't many people around unless they were also exploring the wilderness preservation in the area.

Being near water is where I feel most comfortable and at peace. It's my dream to someday live near the coast or in a condo on the lake where I can leisurely go and spend time near a body of water. Until then, occasional visits to local beaches and Lake Michigan will suffice because it's better to spend some time spiraling in happiness with a clear head than no time.

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