The flight to Chicago was uneventful. Returning to Chicago is always filled with nostalgia for me, and this time, a little shock. The airport in Pittsburgh is, unfortunately, a very quiet place, a little backwater. The organized chaos of O’Hare took me by surprise.
My first feeling I no longer knew how to proceed at O’Hare was quickly dispelled as I realized I had arrived at Terminal 2 and had to proceed through an inside revolving door to Terminal 3 to get my bag. It’s been that way for years. Originally a military airbase, called Orchard Field, I think O’Hare had only 2 terminals when it first opened as a civilian airport. It was quite small and served as a kind of satellite to Midway, which was the original Chicago airport. My first flight, in 1953, was out of Midway in a propeller plane. While I was in college I would sometimes drive out to Midway with a date and we would we would park along a fence and watch the planes take off, and amongst other things, sit and eat doughnut holes, sold at an outlet store for some doughnut manufacturer I no longer remember that was on the way..
Over the years O’Hare grew to 4 terminals with a Hilton Hotel in the center. They enlarged it further by putting a tunnel under the hotel and more areas for passengers to meet or depart from ground transportation. This is the part that’s been really confusing to me, but this time I finally figured it out.
I usually try to fly into Midway when I come to the city so I’ve had limited experience with O’Hare in recent years. So this was kind of fun.
The hotel shuttle returned me to O’Hare and I took the blue line train to downtown Chicago and met the grandchildren, who are no longer children, along with one of my dearest friends and we all had dinner. This morning I again took the shuttle back to the airport and now I’m sitting on the plane watching the flight path on the little video. I had enough frequent flier miles to go business class both ways and it’s great. I love all the space.
One more paragraph and I’m going to sleep. Finally got to the hotel and I can’t keep my eyes open. Good night.