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10 signs you need a vacation from Chicago

Written by
Clayton Guse

It's no secret that Chicago is pretty much the greatest city in the world, especially during the summer. But sometimes the city's rat race can get under your skin. Sometimes you'll have an incredibly gross, vomit-inducing experience and need to take a sabbatical. Sometimes you just need a day trip. Whatever the case, here are some signs that you really need a vacation from Chicago.

You're spending all of your money on cocktails: Fancy cocktails are the life pulse for many Chicagoans, but indulging in unique boozy creations can put a huge dent in your wallet. If you have a lot of trouble deciding whether to pay rent or have a drink, you should probably spend a week in a place where people don't know the difference between a manhattan and an old-fashioned.

Someone pees on you: It could happen on the train. Or maybe at a music festival. If you spend enough time in Chicago, chances are you'll encounter someone else's urine at least once. When that day comes, it's probably best for you to consider leaving town for a few days.

CTA delays have literally made you cry: Getting to work on time or trying to make your dinner reservation is often at the will of the CTA. Chicago's public transit system tends to falter exactly when you need it the most. If it becomes too much and you're left sobbing on the platform, consider heading to a place where the only buses are for bringing children to school.

You forgot what Uber is like without surge rate: UberX is a fantastic service—so long as it's cheaper than a cab. But when the app won't stop jacking up its rates, users are forced to decide between paying an absurd amount of money for a quick ride or physically hailing a cab like it's 2010. Believe it or not, most places in the country have never seen Uber.

Drinking on rooftops stops inspiring you: Rooftops are groovy, but if you've become jaded by the mesmerizing views of the city's skyline, it's probably time to dip out of town for a stretch. Remember the rest of Illinois? You know, the place covered in cookie-cutter homes and corn? One look at a soybean field should be enough to restore your love of rooftops.

You get charged more than $3 for a PBR: Every time a bar charges $5 for a Pabst Blue Ribbon beer, the ghost of a Prohibition-era moonshiner weeps. 

Your neighborhood changes and your rent doubles: Renewing a lease can be a nerve-racking game of "Blind Man's Bluff" between you and your landlord. When new restaurants, developments and attractions flood into your neighborhood, it's a safe bet that your rent is going to rise. Rent is cheaper pretty much everywhere else in the Midwest. But, then again, pretty much everywhere else in the Midwest is lame.

You get ticketed by another red light camera: Even after Mayor Rahm Emanuel promised to cut down on red light cameras across the city, they're still pinging Chicagoans for hundreds of dollars. 

The atrocity that is Ventra fails you again: Maybe your account balance is negative, even though you've set it to auto-pay. Maybe the swipe machine isn't working on the bus and you and the driver nearly go to blows. At some point, everyone needs a break from the CTA's perpetually flawed payment system.

You pass through Wrigleyville after a Cubs game: If you can't decide whether to take a vacation, go to Wrigleyville after a Cubs game. The zombie hordes of bros and bachelorette parties are simply disheartening. The sight of a full-grown man trying to relive his fraternity days is enough to push you to make a B-Line straight to O'Hare.

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