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Visit Chicago: III

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I would like to list some of the Chinese restaurants I visited in this trip (and in the past). I will also list some web sites which I think will be helpful to plan Chicago trip.

Chinese restaurant
Lao Sze Chuan (web site here): this is the first Chinese restaurant I visisted in Chicago (2001?). I waited for more than 30 minutes in a hot summer afternoon. The waiting line is much shorter nowadays because there are more authentic Chinese restaurants. It is located at China town. Some of the food (e.g., rabbit meat) are very spicy in my opinion. Get a map here.

Laoszechuan pic

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Visit Chicago: II

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We are back from Chicago. Visited the Premium mall (near Aurora) yesterday, and was quite impressed. This was my first trip to the Aurora mall, and I was surprised to see so many premium brands and shoppers (esp. the crowds at Coach store). Judging by the size of crowds in the mall, it seems the economy is doing fine. But yesterday, the unemployed number announced by the gov (470,000) exceeded the expectation again. The market tanked again, although I think it has more to do with the July 4th US holiday, people want to play safe in this long weekend.

PT Cruiser
I rent the car from Enterprise near my home, this is a small rental office to serve the Lou Fuze car dealership. I booked an “intermediate”, and they offered the PT Cruiser to me. This is one small mistake I made, I should have booked “midsize” or “standard”. Usually Enterprise has a free upgrade in airport locations, but not this small office, as matter of fact they have to get the PT Cruiser from another office. Initially I was a little uncomfortable about taking this little car to Chicago, but the PT Cruiser turns out to be very good, except one minor problem: there is no guard/screen for the trunk.


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Visit Chicago: I

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We came to the windy city yesterday, and today we visited quite a few places: Michigan Ave. (magnificent mile), Millennium Park, Art Institute (outside, no inside tour yet), Navy Pier, China Town. All with the 3 day CTA pass and CTA train/bus.

I did not totally forget about stock market yet. This noon when I was in Chicago Culture Center, I hooked up my Nokia 5800 with the Wifi network. Interestingly I saw Exelon (the utility company serves Chicago, also the company is trying to acquire NRG Energy) signs in couple places: the skybridge connects Millennium Park and Art Institute is sponsored by Exelon. Because I own NRG stock, and Exelon is in a proxy fight against current NRG board, I received both letters from NRG and Exelon. Not surprising I voted according to NRG board recommendation, and did nothing on Exelon letter. One thing I noticed is the proposed Exelon board candidate is not really qualified to run utilities companies, they could be the “friends of Exelon” board.

Back to travel, we are staying at La Quinta Inn Schaumburg, most things are ok except this silly network (managed by LodgeNet, a Nasdaq listed company, ticker symbol LNET). One problem I encountered is Google map and Google finance don’t work all the time. It thinks I was doing something fishy and says “in next 10 minutes you will only have 56k speed”. It’s like punish a kid for doing something wrong. Pretty much the much publicized Green Dam project. One thing I am aware of is I am using Mac. But the behavior of network is annoying, to say the least.


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Back from Chicago

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First I would like to say Chicago is freezing cold. I did not spend much time outside, but I did feel it when I was waiting for the bus and train from Midway to hotel (and back). It’s a short trip, 29 hours exactly (4PM yesteday to 9PM today), and the main purpose was taking (retake) CFA I test at McCormick Place, one of the top exhibition center in North America.

Hyatt Regency McCormick Place
It’s decent, although not perfect considering its $179 (pre-tax) room rate. I can hear some noise from the neighbour or the hallway. And the comforter (quilt) in hotels seems always too thin for me. The bed is good (I am thinking buying the Hyatt Grand Bed/mattress now). Two features I found interesing (and useful), the self check out kiosk and the board pass printing kiosk.

fastboard boarding pass print kiosk

CFA test scene

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