an empty Chicago – what’s the norm?

It’s Friday night. On a normal day, Chicago would be bustling with activity.

On a normal day, partygoers and club enthusiasts line up outside the bars and clubs, the girls wearing too-short dresses and skirts huddling for warmth while men group together to take a shot from their hidden flask.

On a normal day, cars would be honking and cursing at each other trying to get through the impossible Friday night traffic.

On a normal day, music would pound from each streetcorner, whether it be from the clubs or from a party at someone’s home.

On a normal day, some may be waiting outside for a table at their favorite Friday night restaurant.

This wasn’t a normal day, nor a normal year. It’s been like this for months now.

Last Friday, some friends and I took a bike ride around one in the morning around the city. It was strange. There were only a few cars that popped up that seemed to only be meandering through the city. We spotted a few people walking, but they had no course of action either.

Except one guy. He saw us riding and ran over and yelled out that he was selling an assortment of drugs. We quickly rode away, laughing awkwardly.

Is this the norm now? In the coming days, Illinois will begin reopening. But it will take a lot for people to return to normalcy after dealing with the unknown for nearly two months.

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