Cassidy Williams

Software Engineer in Chicago

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Quirky local delights


There’s some things that you really only appreciate when you live in a place for a long amount of time, things that are sort of a… weird constant outside of your house.

In my case, one of my favorite spots to grab lunch after church on Sundays is a no-frills deli called Manny’s. This place has been around for literally more than 50 years, and it’s got great food that the neighborhood loves.

But beyond the awesome food, I love that you can usually find parking at Manny’s, and when you open the car door, you immediately start hearing opera music. The 7-Eleven across the street consistently plays opera on their speakers outside. Why? Who knows, and who cares, it’s the 7-Eleven that plays opera.

You walk into Manny’s, and you immediately get in line and order somewhat quickly because folks are in a rush to eat, and the people behind the counter are in a rush to get you served. Once you sit down to eat, a local magician works the crowd with family-friendly tricks before he heads out to perform at the Chicago Magic Lounge in the evening.

This is just a small little picture of what I mean by these local delights. Anyone who’s just visiting might say, “huh, weird” or not even notice the consistent opera, the consistent sandwiches, or the consistent magic tricks. But when the world is chaotic and unpredictable, it’s nice to have these little things to remind you that you’re home.

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