Saturday, 26 January 2008

Around Philly

From Chicago and New York we'll now be returning to pictures from Philly! Maybe I'll go through my London and Brussels pictures and post some of them soon... Anyway, I've decided as I'm not overly burdened with homework this weekend and am going to be social tonight it would be perfectly fine for me to give my blog some attention this afternoon. How about I take you around Philly today? We can start at Fern Rock, head to Chinatown for lunch, get some bubble tea, walk through Center City, around to South Street and back to City Hall! Alright let's go, this will also give you views of Philly from the safety of your computer room rather than walking around in 30 degree weather like it is today...

Fern Rock, the starting point for the Broad Street line subway. All trains both local and express start at Fern Rock and then head towards Center City and eventually end in South Philly near the Stadiums- Citizen's Bank Park home of the Phillies and Lincoln Financial Field (more commonly known as the Link) home of the Eagles. I take the Broad Street line every school day to Girard and then I take the #15 Trolley. You would think on my weekends I wouldn't want to be anywhere near these trains but it is the easiest way to Center City so...

Chinatown in Philly is pretty popular among those who live here but I wouldn't call it a big tourist spot. A friend and I met up and then went to Chinatown to walk around and then to have lunch. At the Shanghai bazaar you can find any number of interesting things from Chinese clothes to Harry Potter in Chinese. If you have any desire to have Acu-puncture it is also done here. It was also conveniently located right across the street from the restaurant Xannie and I were headed for lunch. 

I had never been to the Ocean Harbor Restaurant before and let me tell you, it was an experience! The place was packed with people most of whom were Chinses and yelling across the room to each other in who knows how many different dialects of Chinese! When you finally are seated you choose what you want to eat from the numerous carts that are being pushed around near your table and those around you. When ever you make a selection the server marks off on a card of your table what you've had to eat.  It cost me and Xannie to both have a really good meal (and to come out stuffed) a grand total of 12 dollars. Is that even possible to have a good meal for 6 bucks a person anymore? Well in Chinatown apparently it is..

Let's now take a break from food and walk off our lunch in Center City! Philly like most cities has the modern Sky-Scraper buildings but I think the older buildings are cooler and add a lot to the city. Some of the buildings in the Old City section of the city have been around since before the Revolutionary War (you do the math). These two aren't even close to that old but I still like them.

Now, how about some bubble tea? If you've never had it before it make take a little while for it to grow on you. The Zen Tea House has an awesome atmosphere and is a great place to relax, talk with friends, or to curl up in one of the comfy chairs with a book while you enjoy your custom made drink whether it's bubble tea or something else.

Now, on to South Street. It's one of my favorite places in Philly. It kind of is like Camden in London but it's way smaller but it has kind of the same feel as Camden. South Street attracts so many different types of people. You have the rockers, the hippies, the suburban ditzes, and then me :-) The shops of South Street range from everything from South American imports stores, to the Adidas Store to Kondom Kingdom (we're being honest here...). I love South Street because no where else in Philly will you find so many different people, from so many different backgrounds shopping in the same stores, going into the same restaurants and interacting with each other. It gives you a picture of how things really should be in a city that has the highest homicide rate in the country.

Well, our tour of Philly through the eyes of a Philadelphian is coming to a close. Here's City Hall. The cleaning/restoring of it has been going on for years and years. That's the reason why half of the clock tour is white and the other is more of a brownish gray. There's also a lot of scaffolding around William Penn... who knows when the whole process will be complete. Hopefully sooner rather than later so people can go back to taking pictures of ol' Willy Penn and not the scaffolding surrounding him!

I hope your virtual tour of Philly has been a good one! Maybe this will inspire some of you out there and you know who you are ;-P to come and visit. That way you can go around to all these places, as well as others, and then post all kinds of pictures about your time in Philly!!!

iTunes: Tear Drops On My Guitar by Taylor Swift

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

New York Views

I spent the weekend in New York a while back with my mom's younger brother, his wife, and their absolutely adorable 9 month old daughter. My uncle met me at the trains station and we spent the afternoon walking from one end of New York to the other....literally! I saw Ground Zero for the first time which was extremely saddening. I've obviously seen video footage of the site and I can remember 9/11 as if it were yesterday but to actually see the empty ground where the Trade Towers should have been was just insane. When Will (my uncle, he's only 11 years older than me and I've never actually called him "uncle" despite the fact that he is) and I were ready to head home we walked across the Brooklyn Bridge which is where both of these pictures come from. Anna C., I thought of you later when I was looking at this picture because of the lines the cables make in the first picture:-)

iTunes: Espacio Sideral by Jesse y Joy