"Boy in the New Country" Part 11 - Visit to the John Hancock Center

TechNews Writer
Mon Mar 11, 2019

What do you do when you get a blue clear sky with the sun around in Chicago? You want to explore places, right? That’s what I did on a sunny October morning. The blessing in disguise was the fact that it was going to stay sunny throughout the day. That’s music to the ears. So, what do you do in such a case? You explore Chicago from altogether a different angle, quite literally. And when one of your school friends is in town and ever boasting about how the city she lives in is fabulous, it was time to show what Chicago has to offer.

Catching up with your school friends is always special, and being in a different place or a different country, for that matter,  is a feeling which cannot be expressed with words. This time around, I was in for a surprise; she was accompanied by her mother and husband. It was like a small family reunion that everyone would like to experience, being far away from the place where you stay. It was truly amazing to see all of them together. But yes, coming back to seeing Chicago from another view, I decided to take her to the John Hancock Center, or famously called the 360 Observatory.

If you guys want to see for yourself the whole of Chicago, it is one of the places that one should definitely visit for various reasons. One of the unique experiences is Tilt. Ever dreamt of continuously falling in your sleep and hitting the ground and waking up to realize, it was just a dream? Well, Tilt is not exactly the way you think it could be. Imagine being 94 floors above the ground, standing on one of the edges and the edge starts to fall at almost a 45-degree angle. Scary when you think about it, right? Trust me. It is. It is during this time when you feel that you are almost going to die, you get horrible thoughts in your mind, like "What if the Tilt machine fails?" "What if it just keeps on tilting?" or "What if I fall down?" But that’s the best part, it is extremely safe and worth the experience. But it is definitely not advisable for the weak-hearted ones.

Before jumping onto the next important part, let me tell you about two great things that I experienced. Being a resident of Chicago, you can go in at half rates. Just show your college ID which shows that you are from Chicago and enjoy the experience at half rates. Another important thing, please log in to the Wi-Fi with your email ID. The reason I am saying this is because, after the visit, you get a mail from the 360 Observatory team asking for feedback about the experience. I filled in the 15-minute survey and was eligible for a free gift. Who would not like a freebie? As prompted, I filled in the survey and after successfully submitting it, I got the next visit free to the John Hancock Center. So, the next time you visit, please log in to the Wi-Fi at the observatory deck without fail.

The viewing experience at the observatory deck was absolutely wonderful. Seeing the whole city including some of the suburbs from such a height on a clear, blue-sky day was really beautiful. You can actually see many of the landmark places from the top while facing each of the directions. Lake Shore drive, Navy Pier, and the Willis Tower are some of the iconic landmarks you can see from the top. Being connected to Wi-Fi, I called my family back home and they were amazed to see what this beautiful city has to offer.

Not to forget the elevators that take you up and down; those elevators take exactly 45 seconds from top to bottom. A momentary phase of dizziness while going up and coming down, but again that’s the part of an experience that John Hancock Center has to offer. Overall, a wonderful experience, and visiting with my friend’s family made it more special. I would recommend everyone to go and take this experience at least once; you never know, you might get the next visit free.




Appears in
2019 - Spring - Issue 7