An Open-air Bus Tour Of Chicago, Illinois

I have been going to Chicago, Illinois from time to time, for all of the fifty years of my adult life.  When I was about twenty I chose Chicago as the first big city that I would explore and it was thrilling!  Since then I have always driven myself about Chicago, dodging the insane traffic along the Magnificent Mile (Chicago’s premier commercial district), to see the Art Institute of Chicago (with world-renowned art exhibits), and the Field Museum of Natural History (with the world's largest Tyrannosaurus Rex), and the Shedd Aquarium (a huge, modern facility that first opened in 1930 and houses a multitude of fish in five million gallons of water), into the urban canyons of the Chicago Riverwalk, and more, so very much more.


On my most recent trip to Chicago, I took the 2 ½ hour open air “trolley” tour for the first time.  It was actually a double-decker bus, with a $50.00 fare which was advertised as variable (?)  A young, kind bellman at my hotel walked me to the nearest tour bus stop, he found a nearby bench for me to wait on, he waited with me, and then he caught the tour bus for me, holding it until I could catch up to it.


The first hour of the tour was joyous for me, it was a beautiful day, and Chicago was in a very good mood.  It was fun to ride along those streets that I knew so well, to gawk at the sights I had previously seen as burred glimpses, to ride alongside of agreeable people from Nebraska, Arizona, Brazil, France, India, and who knows where else!  The second hour of the tour was still very interesting but I was thinking that at my age an hour would have been plenty.  The last half hour of the tour had only the finality of pain.  At my end stop the tour guide and bus driver kept me back, saying they would let me off closer to my hotel than the regular stop which was two blocks away.  Then they missed the hotel because it was “camouflaged” with new exterior repair scaffolding, and I had to ride another twenty minutes to the next stop where, with many assurances that I would not be forgotten, I waited on a stone bench for forty minutes for a manager to come and take me to my hotel.  The tour guide had patted my shoulder and said with all of her young woman’s sincerity, “I got you.”  I felt protected and vulnerable all in the same tired moment.


Why is it that nothing is ever straight-forward with me?  Well, for one thing most seventy-year olds do not go on city bus tours by themselves.  But I have no one, and if I am to go, I must go alone.

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See my Vlog on this website for a snippet of how my Chicago bus tour went:

Chicago Open Air Bus Tour 06-04-18 video by Annmarie Throckmorton.mp4

Caption:  Chicago Sears Tower In Razzle-Dazzle

(now named the Willis Tower)

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  She Was The Youngest Tour Guide In The Company

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Chicago Open Air Bus Tour 06-04-18

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Muddy Waters Mural 2017

photograph by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Everyday Blue Cross Blue Shield Phone Spams Me

And Here They Are, Those Blankety-blanks!

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  The statue of Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture,

atop the 600' Board of Trade building, does not have a face.

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018


 Caption:  Chicago That Toddlin’ Town

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Chicago The Downtown You Love

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  A Trump Tower View To Please Everyone

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Parking Chicago Style

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018.jpg

Caption:  Chicago River Walk Through Urban Canyons With Stone Benches

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  Chicago In A Blur

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  A Quiet Passage In Chicago

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

Caption:  A Milder View of Chicago

by Annmarie Throckmorton 2018

 Caption:  Chicago Open Air Bus Tour 06-04-18

screen capture from Annmarie Throckmorton’s Chicago tour video


I took this very short video clip inadvertently, but amusingly

it captures the essence of how an old lady does on a 2 1/2 hour bus tour!


See it in my Vlog "In The Rain" on this website, 















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