The Great Jesse and Erin Summer Adventure, 2010 Edition: Day Nine

The last day of vacation! We arrived in Philly a little late due to traffic and bad weather, and the sky was overcast and drizzly. We were so happy to be off the road when we got to our hotel, which was, we both agreed, the nicest of the three hotels we had this trip. (Bonus points: It was also the cheapest.) Our room was super clean, nicely designed, all gray and white and huge red curtains. The hotel was a little marvel.

Check out the view from the elevators (right). Faux-exterior front against some of the room windows. Also, there were "soundscapes" playing in the elevators. Going up, it might be a babbling brook. Going down, a horse running. Next time, a heartbeat? Jesse thought it weird, but I liked it.

We could have spent the whole time in the hotel relaxing but decided we needed to see a bit more of Philadelphia, so we ventured out, umbrella in hand.

We wandered through the Reading Terminal Market, where you can get everything from flowers to coffee to tea to honey to books to Pakistani food (why not?). Fresh meats, seafood, local produce. Lovely!

I'm pretty sure this place was designed with me in mind.

Next stop, more history! We saw the Liberty Bell and toured Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were written. I didn’t expect to be so awed, but I was. It’s a little overwhelming to see in person the place where your country was born.

Outside the Liberty Bell center, a woman was passing out free Cherry Dr. Peppers, so we snagged a couple, but then had to chug them because we couldn’t take them inside. That wasn’t the best idea.

Next on our Philadelphia Must-Do List: Cheesesteaks.

We walked to South Street, and if it hadn’t been raining and if it hadn’t been Sunday evening (a lot of shops were closed), we would have explored a bit more. It seemed like a fun area. We’ll put that top of the list for next time. We ate at Jim’s Steaks. Eating at Jim’s involves standing outside in a very long line, which wrapped around the corner of the building, and then getting inside so you can stand in another very long line, which twisted around the tiny downstairs interior.

Loooong line!

After finally ordering our sandwiches (with cheese, Provolone for me and American for Jesse, and with onions), we took them upstairs and relished being off our feet and finally getting some food in our hungry tummies.

I sure did eat a lot on this trip...but I also walked a lot too!

And then, though there was more to see, we decided to enjoy the calm of our hotel room, enjoy being off our feet, taking showers, watching cable (which we don’t have at home). The next day would be spent in the car, hours and hours of I-95, and there would be the oppressive Southern humidity to come home to, there would be traffic and heat and rushing. So that night, then, our last vacation night, we opted for an evening in, a big soft bed with fluffy pillows and a down comforter, the AC turned down way lower than we keep it at home, a TV much nicer than the one we have at home, snuggled up and comfy, just happy to be together.

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