Our Fave “Urban Oasis”

Chicago is great (whee!), but sometimes we need to get away from it all for even a few minutes. This week we asked ourselves for our favorite “urban oasis.”

Tankboy says:

The stretch of Thatcher Road in-between Cumberland and North Avenue is my personal spot to regain my wits. After a tortorous commute back into the city each night that expanse of green leaves and overly oxygenated air is what saves me from just screaming obscenities at every other driver in sight.

Rob says:

I have a new urban oasis. The library. Everytime I go in there I come out 2 hours later with some great stuff (even though my local library has a pretty “poor” selection by library standards). Where else can you get homeless folks desperately surfing for porn and cute “library girls” getting catty over books all in one place! I’ve been ripping though some classics lately and loving it. Besides, Fall is coming. Crisp leaves, a musty book and a bottle of wine is a pretty great thing.

Rod says:

Luckily for me, I have many favorite oasises in Chicago: parks. It isn’t often that I get to just lie down on the grass, swoosh my arms and legs to make grass angels, look up at the sky and take a few deep breaths. It doesn’t matter if the park is crowded or empty either, because I have no problem spacing out into my own little world. Unfortuately the Chicago winter is coming soon, so unless I make a special trip I’m going to have to wait a while to enjoy.

CP says:

My landlord is my neighbor and he’s not around much, so I have unofficial exclusivity to the back porch on my building. The furniture my girlfriend’s dad made is almost too nice for the porch itself. It’s not exotic, but it does have one hell of a display of X-mas lights. The view isn’t that great and the breeze doesn’t blow very directly onto it, but it’s relaxing. If I wanna go it alone, I grab a bottle of wine, some cigarettes and some Bukowski and I wouldn’t wanna be anywhere else at that moment in time. If I have the friends over, we grill. If I’m at home with my lady, we sit and talk, trying to catch up on the days that kind of disappear a little too fast out of our memories. It’s nothing special but it’s some place to catch my breath. Maybe I’ll have a cookout this weekend.

Officer Gleason says:

My urban oasis is the Sullivan House Alternative School.  I know it’s work related, however, I have never left that building feeling anything less than recharged.

Jennifer says:

Hands down the Fern Room in the Lincoln Park Conservatory. Lush. Prehistoric. Intimate. It’s also a sound art exhibit space called “Florasonic,” which is curated by the Experimental Sound Studio. Layer upon layer of humid, provocative escape.

Steven says:

My fave urban oasis would have to be Home Sweet Home. Being on the top floor in the corner apartment has it’s advantages: nice view, city sounds, no one above, quiet below. And once that lake breeze starts up, fuggetaboutit.

Lauren says:

My favorite urban oasis is an oasis no more.

Way back in the day when I used to live with my sister Brianne and fellow writer CP, we had a hammock in the backyard. Nothing about the hammock was amazing, our backyard definitely didn’t have the greatest view, and 3 people precariously shoved in a hammock isn’t exactly comfortable. But there was something awesome about coming home from a stressful day at work, grabbing a beer and a magazine, and relaxing in the excellent late summer air.

Fuzzy says:

If it’s been a long day at work and we need to recharge before we head off to the inevitable rehearsal, Erica and I will walk a few blocks north and take the Chicago Ave. pedestrian underpass and sit on the steps by the lake. It’s certainly not the finest stretch of lakefront, with Drive traffic whizzing by behind your head and nothing in front of you but a slab of concrete before a sharp drop into the lake, but just sitting there for a few minutes chatting about our days and watching the joggers, bikers, swimmers, and dog walkers is usually enough to give us the boost we need to get through the rest of the day.

2 Comments so far

  1. Moon (unregistered) on September 22nd, 2005 @ 3:48 pm

    Those benches near Chicago Avenue on the Lakefront are nice girl watching benches. I relax there after a long run and work the kinks out of my neck by rubbernecking the girls going by.

  2. Moon (unregistered) on September 22nd, 2005 @ 3:52 pm

    One of the best places is on Navy Pier, believe it or not.

    Grab a book, get a couple of beers at the beer garden and go to the NORTH side of Navy Pier near the end. There are benches that face out towards the lake and you have the planters with the begonias behind. It’s a nice smell (because of the begonias, it’s quiet(er) and the view is spectacular. (I always have my Dell DJ on, so don’t quote me on the noise – it could be really loud and I just don’t know it because of the music)

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