Philadelphia Story

Travis landed an internship at a top landscape architecture firm this summer, so we packed up the pups and headed to Philadelphia, where the company is located. Since I work from home, it was easy for me to go along.

We rented a cute little furnished apartment from a Penn graduate student in Center City, near Rittenhouse Square. We went on lots of walks. We ate pizza and, on our last night there, cheesesteaks (thanks to my cousins Austin and Ashley for the tips). We took weekend trips to New York City and Cape May on the Jersey Shore (not that Jersey Shore). We made at least three treks a week to both Food and Friends (groceries) and Good Karma (coffee shop) in our neighborhood. We visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art on pay-what-you-want Sunday (glorious) and the Benjamin Franklin Institute on a kid-packed Saturday (kinda weird and dinky, but I did get to make my own paper).

We tried to catch a Phillies game and even scored tickets through Travis’s job, but a rain delay screwed things up and made us miss the game, so we had to settle for the Camden River Sharks instead.

We walked blocks and blocks and blocks carrying car batteries when the Fit died—twice. We lost $100 on our security deposit when Maeby, confused by this whole not having a yard thing, peed all over the rug.

We did not complain about it never raining, the way one does when one summers in Austin or lives any other time of the year in Tucson. We saw that chick who plays the ukulele on Raising Hope on the street outside of a movie theater. She was carrying her ukulele.

We shopped at the Macy’s where Mannequin was filmed, and I took a moment to acknowledge my deep and abiding love for that fine movie, pointing out where Kim Cattrall hang-glided and Andrew McCarthy played the organ.

We paid an exorbitant amount of money for the most mouth-wateringly delicious fish and chips in the world—thanks, Dandelion Pub!

I turned 30 and was treated by my mom to an all-natural pedicure where they rubbed cold lime slices between my toes.

We missed our friends and our home. We soaked up the time to ourselves, like a little incubator for our family. We wondered if we were meant to return to the northeast sometime in the future. We settled on undecided.

So thank you for a memorable summer, Philly (and people really do call it Philly). You are charming and unassuming and a little difficult at times. But that’s sort of how I like life to be.

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I write what I know (and love). Mostly higher education, writing and public relations.