Providence to Philadelphia

I said good riddance to the frat house.

Lovely to stay, but I won't come back.

And had a bit of a wait for the library since it only opened at 12.30pm.  In the mean time I impersonated a hobo reading a copy of Grantaon a park bench.  That afternoon I went to the gym.  They gave out free pizza.  Rather counterproductive but this is America, after all.  I walked up to my new residence in the ultra-flash part of town.  My new hostess gave me a tour around the city by night.

Edgar Allen Poe read poetry to his lady friend here.

He also fell up the stairs here, drunk, not endearing himself to his girlfriend’s father.

The Fleur de lis from H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulu mythos

Lovecraft's actual house

Suspended pineapple in the Italian district. I have no idea what it means.

The world's first mall! No kidding. Now developers are trying to demolish it and it's empty.

The next morning I said goodbye to the cats.

And the protest signs.

I took a bus to Philadelphia and met my host.  He had 500 television channels in High Definition.  I spent all evening watching TV.  The next day I set out in to the city.

Note loyalist flag.

Tourism here is big business and they have a very slick visitors’ centre.

The foundations of the first presidential house.

The Liberty Bell has a queue but when I went it wasn’t too long and moves quickly – the hold up is everyone having their bag searched by hand.

Cracked.

They have a cast of it if you have the urge to touch, since touching the original is VERBOTEN!

Next stop: Independence Hall

You need tickets but they’re free.  Once again go through security then sit in a room with a hundred schoolchildren for a longwinded talk.  Eventually you move off to the site.

Where the Declaration of Indpendence was signed

They also have some founding documents – photos allowed!

A copy of the Declaration

After that I had a traditional lunch.

Philadelphia cheesesteak. But since American cheese has no taste it was a bit of a let down.

I walked up to Ben Franklin bridge.  He is everywhere and on everything.

The Delaware

Philadelphia

Then I walked back to town and visited the Todd and White houses – occupied in the 1700s.  Both have been restored – the Todd house has very little left of the original, but the White house fare better.  You need a free tour ticket to visit them.

Todd house parlour and office

Bedroom. Note the convenience

White house dining room

The study, with a picture of itself?!

Bed where Bishop White died. Supposedly haunted.

After that I walked down to the Italian market.

I was underwhelmed.

There were some Italian grocers, fresh produce, and random crap.

Back in the central city.

Once again there was an Occupy protest.

Fully equipped. Note maths lessons on the timetable.

Next door.

Philadelphia has an avenue based on the Champs de Elysee – and it is quite a good impersonation.

Here it is lined with the flags of the world.

I walked up to the art gallery.  You will see a lot of people running up the steps and doing a dance at the top.

But why?

 

Their most famous fictional son

People run up here because there are no other hills in the city, and there’s a good view.  There aren’t even that many stairs.

What a view!

 

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