I will admit that giving these play by play accounts of my trip really makes me want to go back and do the whole thing all over again! Reliving the memories has been fun and it’s been a joy to share them. Nothing can replace time spent with family. This trip was truly a blessing for the fact that I got to share these experiences with the people I love the most. I miss them greatly and I look forward to us all begin together again in December. Until then, I will have the memories of this fabulous trip to keep me going.
I left us at a cliff hanger in the last post. Tuesday afternoon turned out differently than expected! After walking around the park, we were all a little warm and wanted to head back to the hotel to freshen up and regroup. The rest of the afternoon’s plans hadn’t been solidified, but I’m positive they would have involved more walking. We had thought about maybe hitting more shops on the mile that we had yet had a chance to go in to. However, our plans ended up keeping us very close to the hotel!
To explain our afternoon I will need to fill you in some details. My dad invited us all to join him on this trip because he was taking a class in Chicago. He walked about 2 blocks each morning to the location of his class. He mentioned to us one day that they were filming a movie in the hotel he was taking classes in. Another class attendee mentioned it was the next Superman movie. Now we had noticed some unique things around our hotel – specifically people wearing earpieces standing on all the street corners. When asked about the movie these people would respond saying they were apart of a movie called “Autumn Frost”, in fact some had shirts that said that. I didn’t know this because I’m not a movie buff, but while filming a movie they will give it a code name so people don’t know what’s really going on. Autumn Frost turned out to be code name for the new movie Man of Steel coming out in 2013. When my dad mentioned this I instantly hopped onto my IMBD app to see who was going to be in this movie. Turns out some big names like Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, and Amy Adams.
I’m not really the type of person to stalk a movie set, but there was something exciting about having a movie being filmed so close to us. After we returned to our hotel, Jeremy noticed that people on the street below were being asked to stand in place. It would seem that people were being selected to be in the movie. Jeremy and Andrew got very excited about this so we all headed downstairs and outside to see what was going on. There were crew members all around and you could tell that people were being placed and staged. Jeremy went up to one of the extras and asked he had been told to stand there like that and the man broke out in a big smile and said yes. We could tell they were preparing to film a scene and we wanted in on the action.
Now we were not chosen to stand there… I’m actually glad because those people stood in their spots for over 2 hours before there was really any action. We decided to sit in front of a coffee shop on the street to see if we could see a movie star or a watch a scene being filmed before our eyes. Since we were seated in the coffee shops outdoor area, we went in and bought some water and coffees so we would actually be paying customers. We ended up sitting and watching the crew and the extras for about 2 hours. Nothing exciting did happen, however, at times it seemed like it might. We generally chatted about how cool it was to be on a set and to see the extras in place. We talked about how awesome it would be to see a movie star and maybe even be included in the movie.
Our time at the coffee shop ended when we realized that we need to connect with my dad and that the scene were hoping to see filmed wasn’t going to start rolling for a while. We headed back to our hotel rooms across the street and met up with my dad to discuss dinner plans. As we discussed the rest of our day, we noticed that something was going on down below. The extras were now moving! They had been standing in the same place for hours, so something must have happened! Then we saw a Metropolis cab and taxi… Then we saw a film crew following a man on a bicycle riding down the street! It was Clark Kent! We’re assuming he was riding his bike to work at the Daily Planet, but I guess we’ll have to watch the movie to really know for sure! In a flurry of excitement we again ran downstairs to get in on the action.
Once on the street again, we could tell that they were looping the block and would be back for another take. We stood across the street as Clark Kent again rode past us on his bike! It was very thrilling and I must say I got a bit star stuck and giddy! We had literally been feet away from the filming of a major motion picture! We set off down the street and round the block so the guys could show us some fo their finds (Jeremy and Andrew had gone exploring around the set just a few hours earlier). Just a block away from our hotel, you could see the trailers they had set up and the extra vehicles – police cars and taxis all saying Metropolis on them. This was the last day they would be filming in Chicago and you could tell because everyone was packing things up. We turned the corner just in time to see Clark Kent flying by for a third time. We were told by the crew member on the corner of the street to not look into the camera because it was riding right past us. So… who knows! We might be in a split second of the movie!
After watching the same scene being filmed three different times and from three different angles, we decided to leave the set and search for dinner. Our dinner location was The Cheesecake Factory. This restaurant is always a special treat and it was just as yummy as I always remember. The store front looked like a mushroom (weird, I know) and the inside decor had the same feel. My family joked that it looked like we were heading into a hobbit version of Cheesecake Factory. It was a very funky experience. It was certainly decorated differently then the other ones I’ve been to. I ended my meal by ordering my favorite lemon raspberry cream cheesecake! I was a very happy camper.
With dinner over, we took off to do some looking through the mile shops. April, Mom, and I explored a four story Crate and Barrel. The boys went to the Harley store! We enjoyed looking through some nice stores and letting our tummies settle a bit after all that good food and cheesecake. Once our window shopping experience was complete, we headed back to the hotel for a good nights sleep before another busy day!
Thus, Tuesday came to an end!