Though our hour at the Air & Water Show wasn't a great time, I'm glad we went. For one thing, it's good to venture into a large crowd now and then, if only to be reminded of how vast the number of people is, and that many of them probably aren't much like you.
Also, the logistics of going to the city, and into a large crowd, aren't quite as hard as they used to be. I don't have to worry, for example, that Ann will run off into the crowd unexpectedly, as once happened in the busy Mall of America when she was three. We found her, obviously, but it made for a bad few minutes.
The best part of the day began when we walked away from the show and saw other things. Like a statue of the man who invented dentistry, which you can find near the intersection of North Avenue and State Parkway in the extreme southern reaches of Lincoln Park.
Maybe not "invented." But his fellow dentists thought highly enough of Dr. Greene Vardiman Black (1836-1915), the Father of Modern Dentistry, to erect a statue of him in Lincoln Park, a park that also sports statues of Lincoln (by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, no less), Grant, Alexander Hamilton, Shakespeare, Hans Christian Andersen, Goethe and Schiller.
This is what Dr. Black's statue tells us:
"G. V. Black — Father of Modern Dentistry — Born on the prairies of Central Illinois, self educated, he became in his profession the foremost scientific investigator, writer and teacher of his time."
"Erected to the memory of Dr. G. V. Black by the members of the dental profession in appreciation of his services to them and to humanity. Dedicated by the National Dental Association — August 1918"
More on Dr. Black is here. Almost directly across the street from Dr. Black is the official residence of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Chicago. The AIA Guide to Chicago says: "This early Queen Anne residence still has Italianate windows but is dominated by the busy picturesque roofline typical of the style, punctuated by nineteen chimneys."
We didn't count the chimneys. Lilly counted the window-unit air conditioners, however, but I forget how many she got to. They weren't original equipment, but even prelates want to be cool on those few hot summer days that we do have, if the technology's available.
I managed to get a picture of the archbishop's garden, which is lush this time of year. Behind that is the archbishop's garage, which seems to have chimneys too, but I don't know if they're in addition to the 19 or part of the 19.
Then we strolled down State Parkway, which is really just the northern end of State Street, past some other posh old addresses, such as this one, an eight-bedroom, 6.5-bath dwelling with an asking price of $6.8 million (no doubt a deal compared with a few years ago).
The parkway, no different in size than any other Chicago street, does has towering mature trees, so it was a pleasant, shady walk. Even the cloudburst, which started falling on us a few blocks south of the archbishop's residence, added to the experience. For a while we stood under one of the block's sheltering trees and let it rain.
Labels: Chicago, mass events, memorials