Archive for the ‘Chicago’ Category

Our other houses, Part 1 (The Churchill)

Tuesday, July 17th, 2007

Although we’re living with Lisa’s parents, we used to be independent home owners when we lived in Chicago. Lisa’s first place (bought in early 1995) was a junior one bedroom in the Churchill, built in the 1920s.

I [Lisa] did nothing to it except ask the PO to install a desk instead of a breakfast bar in the kitchen he was remodelling. (I did get a quote to replace the windows, but I was in law school at the time so home improvement went by the wayside.)

Nonetheless, it was a nice introduction to Chicago’s old house stock. A vintage elevator building, with a fulltime doorman, it was across the street from the Ambassador East, home of the Pump Room and kitty-corner to the Ambassador West, built in 1920.   And, I could walk to school and work.

Incidentally, when I interviewed with my then-soon-to-be future employer of 13 years in the early spring, I stayed at the Ambassador East … and also when I came back in the late summer to find a place to live.  First experience with real bellhops — very much like the movies, he showed me the thermostat and the bathroom.  I don’t recall if I realized he wanted a tip or not.  I also had some very odd cab rides — including a marriage proposal.  Or maybe it was an illicit suggestion.  In any event, the cab driver already had several wives, so I wouldn’t have accepted.

The Ambassadors were built as mirror images, at nearly the same time by relatives, with a tunnel connecting them. The Ambassador East was featured in North by Northwest and Led Zeppelin destroyed a room there in the ’70s. The Ambassador West is now being converted into very expensive condos ($1.15M and up. I paid something around $65K when I bought mine in the Churchill.)  There were famous people who resided at the Churchill, too, but I can’t find reference to them in the Internet.  Also, Mrs. Churchill was related to (I think) Elizabeth Cady Stanton.  There’s a plaque on the wall, but Google doesn’t seem to know anything about it.

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Once upon a time …

Saturday, July 14th, 2007

a man and a woman were told by mutual friends they were perfect for each other, they fell in love, and got married just after the Millennium. (Thanks to the Chicago Cubs.) They have spent most of this century renovating slightly tired to exhausted houses.  They also are raising a daughter, who collects scraps of wood and screws to help Daddy.  This is their story.

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