1. There is a pervasive quiet. A garbage truck rumbles down alleys and side-streets. A few lights flicker on here and there. Pre-dawn is the smell of coffee and fresh baking breads. Isolated strangers stalk the last hours of night. A siren blares, and the tone falls of steadily in Doppler shift, before all returns to calm. The sky glows a bloated and heavy purple falling away to shades of reds and pinks. The city turns softly in a light slumber.
2. The sun rises pale and clear, reaching warm tendrils across the urban sprawl. The city stretches, raising itself skyward. The cacophony of alarm clocks sings silently through brick and steel and glass. Eggs, bacon, sausage all sizzle on skillets. Torrents of hot water sheet down on stiff, groggy citizens. Fleets of buses and trucks rattle through the city streets. Fare boxes and parking meters clink and whirr with the sound of coins. The melody of dozens of overlapping languages weaves it's way into the atmosphere. A thousand garage doors groan open, ten thousand cars growl to life. The pavement warms, reflecting the smell of exhaust at the pedestrians. A hundred thousand phones ring, a million voices reply "Thank you for calling..." "Please hold" "I'm sorry. She's not in right now. Would you like to leave a message?" The streets are alive and dance with teeming White, Blue, No collars, weaving between taxis, cars, trucks, buses, bicycles. Ten million souls vibrate in harmony, a symphony of life.
3. The city stands, tall and proud, with gleaming windows, reflective steel and glass pushing ever upward. It staggers wildly, reeling this way and that, wildly and crazily as it's tenants scurry about it's feet. The smell of every type of food imaginable rises all the way to the highest levels of the tallest buildings. Hordes of people explode from buildings to the summer greens, carrying brown paper bags and colorful plastic ones bearing the insignia of some restauranteur. The parks of Grant and Lincoln, Burnham and Addams, the parks of presidents and visionaries writhe with crowds basking in the sun. The frenzied winds diving and looping through the narrow channels of city streets tug at their clothing. The beaches crowd with people traversing the bike and pedestrian paths aboard bicycles, in-line skates, skateboards. The waters of the lake reflect the startling blue of the sky, broken by the agitation of waves plying the warm sands. The buildings reach for the high midday sun, casting short shadows, allowing sunlight to reach the streets far below. Airplanes scream through the sky, chewing the air and pushing themselves outward. The city extends it's arms wide.
4. Frantic and calm, the city sits with a sigh of relief on it's lips, not yet able to express it. The financial district is settling down, the last push for the day approaches. Northward, across the river, the Magnificent Mile gears up for the evening venues and sales. The relaxed crescendo of energy, the city is in juxtaposition. The bridge at Michigan Avenue, the corpus collosum of the city's distinct halves, jam-packed with those transversing from the strict to the abstract. The city is split along it's axis. One half prepares for sleep, the other is just waking.
5. Joy. Energy. Peace. Happiness. Love. Divinity. Exultation. Relaxation.
6. The crowds and traffic swirl through the store lined streets, bright displays and loud music whimsically drawing them in. The odd tint of low angle sunlight reflected off the glass of the buildings casts a surreal glow over the strolling pedestrians. The sidewalks are casually lined with those unknowingly participating in the celebration of life. The city bears a contented smile and gently pulls itself around the revelers, swaddling them in it's tranquility. An unvoiced melody reveals itself in their minds, as all are bound together, unawares. The sun begins to set. The sky s l i d e s through the most majestic shades of blue possible as everything dims and the lights come on. Time slows to a halt as an eternal evening sets in. The people frolic in an endless bliss, as slowly the light ends and the city pulls in close around those who remain. The last few depart unhurriedly, basking in the profound beauty of the final hours of the day, sad to leave it's comforting aura, yet inexplicably enraptured by it's intoxicating intensity. The city settles into rest.
7. There is a pervasive hum of silence. All sounds damped in the dark. The lonely strangers wander once more. The third shift arises, safeguarding the sleeping innocents. Everything is serene. The city falls into dreams. Dreams of passion. Dreams of strength. Dreams of nobility. Dreams of benevolence. Dreams of the tomorrow's mid-summer's day.