I was traveling in Chicago last week and had some time to adventure away from the towering glass-iron jungles to the smaller, humbler neighbourhoods.
Taking the elevated train/subway in such a large unfamiliar metropolis by myself was exciting already.
Wicker Park was full of mysterious things and misplaced apostrophes.
Buildings boarded up, signs peeling. The rich are very rich and the poor are very poor in this country. I only saw a sliver of the latter, mostly from the window of the metra from Naperville - the ride from idyllic green suburbia to shiny downtown via the outer city apartments perched next to landfills in less than forty minutes. But everybody, even the ones with third-floor balconies ten metres away from the clattering tracks, had to have king-size grills.
I remembered there are millions of people in the fringes of the wealthiest world powers who are quite simply forgotten about.
They live too close to be noticed.
They sell new shoes for $2.99 a pair,
set up hip hop clown businesses,
or dig for whatever is available.