A family enjoys the skyline from Promontory Point Photo: Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune

Chicago, you punish us with your harsh winters, your face-slapping winds, your bone-chilling blizzards. Why do we stay with you, C, when you treat us this way? But then. You melt the snows, you thaw the ice, and you hold out your hand. “I’ll be better,” you whisper. “I promise.”

And you are, for a time. You give us July. Lovingly warm July. Really warm July. Uncomfortably warm July. And then unbearably muggy August? That’s it! That’s absolutely it. We’re done, we’re through, we’re leavin’ …

But, oh, September. When your air is room temperature and the annoying tourists have left and the annoying kids have gone back to school and you, C, are ours alone. We spend the evenings together sipping wine at curbside tables. On weekends we guzzle beer at baseball games, stroll through lush parks, bicycle by the brilliant blue lake. The unsurpassable glory of Chicago in September. How could we ever have doubted you, C? You do love us after all, don’t you? You’ll never, ever be cruel again.