Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sometimes You Gotta Go With Your Gut

I am not a morning person. If you know anything at all about me, know this. I managed to sleep through three women getting up, dressed and chatting in the morning at BlogHer this year because I was not about to face the day. That said, when I had a once in a lifetime opportunity to go do yoga on the ledge on the 103rd floor of the Sears Tower? Well, how do you say no to that?

Even though it was at 6:30 in the morning. At least it was on a Sunday, so there was no traffic to contend with - or I may have begged off. I committed, even with some of my reservations about the hour.

I was so happy to hear my GPS tell me that it truly was only 59 minutes to my destination as I headed out towards the highway. I got through the toll and there was no backup, a good sign. I was so going to be on time. As I listened to the radio list off traffic issues, there was nothing to worry about. Though there was a half marathon going on, it was in Grant Park according to the traffic person, and not going to affect me.

As I got downtown, I couldn't turn left on Jackson. There were little orange cones pushing me west. This was not the direction I wanted to head. That's ok. I turned right on Halstead, the next street to head north. As I went north, every street headed easy was blockaded and monitored by police officers. Was I missing something?

I gave up trying to go north, as there was obviously some sort of issue. I went south to try to head east. And I failed. I kept getting pushed west and south until I finally found a way to make my way east, though very south of the Sears Tower. I was no longer on time. And that zen I had for my yoga? Let's just say that it was gone.

As I made my way easy, I still couldn't go north. Anywhere. I went back across the river, tried going north and ... got stuck. Again. Seriously? If I didn't have an hour long drive back home, I might have bagged it then and there. Someone didn't want me going to this yoga. Someone was reminding me that I am not a morning person and that I could have been happily asleep in my bed.

As I kept driving, I began to notice that there were so many streets blocked off, they ran out of the blue police barricades.

In fact, they eventually ran out of even the construction barricades eventually and were reduced to simply using cones to block streets. No wonder I was having so many issues. Yeah. That race that was being run in Grant Park? Guess what, it was closing the majority of downtown! Until 11am. Oops.

By the time I had found my way as close to the Sears Tower as I was getting and walked to the lobby, I was thirty-five minutes late. Fortunately the first half hour was not actual yoga time, and amazingly the class had somehow not started before I arrived.

I found my zen. And my hamstrings. And my tight low back. I'm pretty sure that tomorrow I'll find my sore abs and an achy chest. It was awesome. I need to do yoga regularly once again. Andrea Metcalf led the class and Melisa was the host as part of her SkyDeck Ambassador role.

And the most impressive part... for me? I actually went on the Ledge. I stood 103 floors above the ground with just three inches of glass separating me from a Looney Toons like fall. Sans happy ending. I was a grabber - I had to hold onto the wall before the ledge to do get out there, but I did it!

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In the interest of full disclosure, I was invited to attend a free yoga class on the Ledge at the SkyDeck of the Sears Tower. I received no compensation, nor was I asked to write about it. As always all opinions (especially about mornings and traffic) are my own.


Heather E August 15, 2011 at 5:55 AM  

:) Sounds like you had an awesome morning even though the traffic sucked! hahaha. Don't you hate unexpected things like that? Frustrating for sure!

Melisa with one S August 15, 2011 at 6:29 AM  

I was just glad you made it! Woot! :)

Tara R. August 15, 2011 at 9:22 AM  

You're doing yoga on the 103rd floor of the Sear Tower on a clear ledge and the main thing you're worried about is the start time? I'm impressed you went out on the ledge, I would be a grabber too.

Joanna Jenkins August 15, 2011 at 5:28 PM  

In a million years I would have never been able to get to the 103rd floor let alone the edge. Very impressive.

Frosted Fingers August 15, 2011 at 8:51 PM  

I hate when they start blocking off streets downtown and then the gps gets lost because of the buildings and streets that go over you.

I don't know if I could handle the ledge. I barely handled the Hancock Tower at BBSummit.

Michelle August 15, 2011 at 9:44 PM  

Heather - Sadly, it wasn't the traffic. There wasn't any. It was just the people who conspired against me to close the streets ;)

Melisa - Oh I was glad I did, too. What a neat and unique experience. Great job putting it together!

Tara - Well that's why I did it! It was getting there that made me question my sanity. Glad to know I'm not the only grabber - though seeing the paint worn away there, I'm sure we aren't alone!

Joanna - I did much better getting there. On the way down, they informed us that the elevator was on half speed because of the amount of swaying the building was undergoing. Ummm.

Paula - Fortunately I can abandon my GPS at that point; I lived and worked downtown enough for that at least. But ohhh when the streets are just closed and you can't get to where you want! Melisa laughed at me about the ledge, BUT I did it.

Pat August 16, 2011 at 7:22 PM  

You are brave...I don't think I'd have the nerve.

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