So it may have been at least a week since I wrote a blog- reason being technical malfunctions. The computer was broken, my phone is broken, George has no credit. It's been a technological nightmare, actually. But anyway, today's entry is going to aim to dispel a few sterotypes. The first being that people from Brooklyn, NYC, are scary. This may seem like I'm digressing a few cities, and I am, but I mention this to put into perspective just how scary Philadelphia was to me.
Maybe scary isn't the right word... We had this overwhelming sense of paranoia the entire four days we were in the city. And what made it such a strange feeling was the massive dichotomy between how nice most of the city is (architecturally and historically) and how scary 80% of the residents are. I felt like everytime we walked down the main streets, people were staring at us for being well.. really, really white (and believe me, this weather has made me whiter than usual), and when they weren't staring, they were road raging. But anyhow, I'll detail our adventures there because I don't actually mean to be Philly bashing, because I did like the place (I think).
The hostel we stayed at was fairly amazing, def one of my favourite this trip. They had so many movies that it was ridiculous, and I think a fair amount of time was spent sitting in front of the tv eating crap food and drinking free hostel beer (it really was that amazing). Also one of the guys who worked there doctored a photocopy of my passport to say I was born in 1988 so I could go out one night. Epic place. I think the first day we arrived we just generally floated around and got lunch waiting for check in time so we could shower the bus off of ourselves- I don't actually think we were overly productive that night either, if i recall it involved pita bread, hummus and 500 Days of Summer.
I'd like to say we got up bright and early the next day, but we didn't. What we did do however was float down South Street which is like a shopping/arty district. We went to this place called the Magic Gardens which is like this whole house which has been mosaic-ed inside, on the roof, outside, on the floor, on the walls, in the toilet (literally everywhere). So that was fairly amazing. The next day we floated to the Eastern STate Penetentiary which was one of the biggest gaols in the USA when it was operative and it had electricity and toilets before the Whitehouse (go figure) and at some point Al Capone was kept in there, his cell was way lavish, it had a bigger bed and actual furniture in it as opposed to all the rest of the cells. Catching public transport there was all part of the experience too... I actually thought my feet were going to freeze off on the tour though which was disappointing. What wasn't so disappointing was our trip to IHoP where I got these epic NYC cheesecake pancakes which were like a religious expereince, totally couldn't finish them and we rolled back to the hostel and tried to get it to digest in time for dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe (sometimes I think we're on more of a food and beverage tour of the US than anything else).
We floated to the Mutter Museum at the College of Physicians the next day- it ws kind of like spending time in the pathology museum at Adelaide only I had to pay for it. But there was this huge wall of malformed skulls which I was all over- we floated past the Liberty Bell on the way home, yet another monumet which George was unimpressed with (get this, the Statue of Liberty wasn't big enough for her, Sorry, France). pretty sure this was the night we hit a club where you just had to pay entry and tip for drinks so that was a fairly amazing set up. We didn't get home too late since we had to be on a bus to DC the next day which we got on with a semi sigh of relief at leaving the place alive.
I guess I can't really come to a conclusion on what freaked me out so much about Philly, the hostel being as amazing as it was kind of saved the trip for us and I'm pretty glad we went- if only for the pancakes! This is probably a bit vague since we've hit up a fair few cities since then but hopefully it got the point across which is; Brooklyn may as well be Park Avenue when compared with Market Street, Philadelphia :)