What a rich and full city. Beautiful parks, lots of locally owned businesses, lots of historical markers everywhere you look… and even a brick-and-mortar vegan center(!)
Yesterday, as you may recall, Eileen and I went to Shofuso Garden. Afterward, we spent several more hours walking around the enormous surrounding Fairmount Park, and then around her urban neighborhood. We saw the vegan center; an incredibly overstuffed books-and-whatever store; lots of historic streets and sites, including Ben Franklin’s grave; and the Liberty Bell.
That evening, there was a breathtaking sunset from the balcony, and then when the light got even lower, we went up to the rooftop to see the city skyline at night. So cool.
Today was different, because the forecast called for many hours of heavy rain and electrical storms. I planned to stay mostly indoors. In reality, though, the storms only materialized briefly, and we had many hours of sunshine. I was still cautious, and just slipped out in the early afternoon to try a local vegan bakery (cannoli! and a delectable spinach pastry!) and then in the early evening, my local friend Amelia picked me up to take me to one of Philly’s famous cheesesteak places, The Triangle Tavern. It is a venerable local institution, but a few years ago a vegan took over in the kitchen, so now the menu contains many vegan menu items. I got to try their “wings” (wow—better than any I’ve had) as well as the spaghetti and meatballs, and of course the required cheesesteak. All were amazing; I will have to return the next time I’m in town.
Afterward, Amelia took me to another spot to try a different Philly classic, water ice. (Or, as it’s often known locally, “wooder ice.”) It’s like what many of us would call a sno-cone, or what Hawaiians would call shave ice, but apparently it has a distinctly Philadelphia flair. I got half-and-half peach and strawberry: yum!
Tomorrow I hope to get in a short ride on the Schuylkill River trail, before heading to the train station in the early afternoon, bound for my next destination of New York!
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