day 5/6

Quick post. I'm sure there's a reason, but I don't feel like figuring it out and then coming up with the words and putting them all in the right order. So instead I'll just list the things we did yesterday and today and then call it enough. Maybe I'll get ambitious enough tomorrow to post a "thing's I'm thankful for" post. Post turkey, naturally. But for now:

Visited the Art Museum. A few fun facts about visiting the Philadelphia Museum of Art:

  1. If you think it will be okay to keep your 3 year old in the stroller and that he'll just quietly sit there because you are going to make it such a fun game by looking for all the puppies and kitties in all the pictures, just do yourself and everyone else a favor and shoot yourself in the head. It's quicker, quieter, and probably leaves less of a mess.
  2. Stroller wheels are acceptable on the old hardwood floors in the exhibit areas. Even those old hardwood floors that look like they are about a paper's width away from being a sawdust. Stroller wheels are NOT acceptable on the stone stairs leading up to the second floor. Because they might somehow damage the stone, duh.
  3. Backpacks are only to be worn on one shoulder, not snug against the back with straps over both shoulders. It would be a shame to miss out on the excitement of nearly knocking over nearby exhibits while trying to shrug a sagging backpack back up on your shoulder while trying to squeeze past the middle school group who has decided the best place to gather is just outside the women's bathroom.
Perhaps someone should have gotten a better night's sleep before venturing out on the town, hmmm?

Dinner (at Cosi) and dessert (at Naked Chocolate Cafe) was the extent of our PM revelry. Or at least that's how BG and I had it planned. LG thought it would be fun to stay up all night. He made it to 10:30, then collapsed in an exhausted heap on the pull out sofa. Persistence is one thing we will never have to work on with this child.

Today we caught the 32 bus to 33rd & Oxford and took a short hike to the Smith Memorial Playground, etc. LG did awesome despite his shortened night. The working traffic signal in the basement was no small help in that area. Anyone who has spent more than 45 seconds with LG is shaking their heads knowingly right now. The bus ride back to City Hall was uneventful with the exception of LG shushing us because he was "A tryin' a talk to Somebody." The gentleman to his right was kind enough to oblige him by listening attentively as he explained the more peculiar aspects of the "Fouw Cwocks on City Hauw" -- mainly that they are yellow when they are all lit up at night, but blue during the daytime and that the clock facing our hotel room was a "witto bit diwty, wite up at da tippy tippy top". Wherever you are, Gentleman to the Right, thank you for taking the time out of your otherwise busy day to make one little boy feel all grown up.

From the bus stop at 15th & JFK we walked through City Hall, past the nearly-decorated Christmas tree ("How come dose wites not on, Mom-mae? Dey not pwugged in? Dey need an outwet? Din dey will haf da lectatricity? And din dey will be all on?") and on to Reading Terminal to see if the train were up and running. They were. And soon we were. And pushing buttons to see "What it do, Mom-mae?" That kept us busy long enough for BG to go back to the hotel and reclaim our luggage so that we could catch the train to DE. The blessed train on which LG finally succumbed to the siren of sleep, packed though it was.

The train ride was uneventful. I'm not sure what kind of event I was expecting that made our ride seem uneventful, but I'm just calling 'em like I sees 'em. And now we're here, ready to take full advantage of the "kick off your shoes and loosen your belt" kind of comfort that only years of friendship can create. Did I mention how much I'm enjoying this trip?

PS Yeah, yeah, I know. This was supposed to be a quick post.


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day 4 -or- then I remembered that there is a business center in the hotel that we are staying at

but not before I texted myself 19 times to put together the following post
:

  1. So the battery recharge didn't last like I had hoped. We are so looking into one of those USB-outlet connector thingies!
  2. Hopefully I'll get this posted tomorrow* (which will actually be today if it happens, or yesterday if not). Meanwhile I'm chewing thru my
  3. text msg allotment 160 characters at a time. Do you know how easy it is to use 160** characters when you're reviewing the days events?
  4. (From "text" to "events" was 157 characters for those with a mind to count). This morning was spent kicking thru the leaves in Rittenhouse Square,
  5. chasing squirrels, and playing in the empty fountain. We hit Barnes & Nobles for a quick change/book look, then grabbed a bite at Cosi.
  6. I had forgotten to pack my black shoes, so we slipped into Payless on the way back. See how high maintenance I am?
  7. After LG's nap, we strolled down Broad towards the Italian Market. BG headed back towards Rittenhouse for dinner with the boys; LG and I
  8. continued on to grab some lettuce for dinner with Lora and Amy. Val, it turns out, got stuck in rush hour traffic. Boo. Almost a
  9. Philly Mama's reunion! I remembered to take the camera, then forgot to take it out until we were packing up to head back
  10. so no picture evidence, but I'd have to edit this to add it anyways, and let's be honest, you're probably not coming back to this post to check.
  11. The food was yummy and the conversation recharging (even as peppered with "LG, stop ---" and "Let's play nicely, LG" and
  12. "LG, tables aren't for standing on" as it was). There is nothing more comfortable than standing in someone else's kitchen in your socks, chatting easily
  13. about everything and nothing and not having to explain the backstory as you go. By 7:30 LG had hit his limit (and Sam a couple of times
  14. much to my dismay. but watching the two of them hug it out after one particular interaction was the stuff that makes a mother's heart
  15. melt. Still annoyed by the violence, but damn that was cute!) so we bundled up to head out. Amy and Sam gave us a lift so we could avoid
  16. the rain. LG was asleep almost before I got him in his jammies. When he slurred out a request for butterfly kisses, I melted away a full
  17. pant size. If I could just figure out a way to stay melted... BG came in shortly after from his Man Dinner. So now, we are skinny but
  18. full, talked out but filled with new stories, cold on the outside but cozy to the core, contentment reigns supreme. This trip is
  19. turning out to be a mixed bag. It is so good to be home. It will be so hard to go back.

*Actually the "tomorrow" in #2 is really "yesterday" but not the "yesterday" in #2 as that "yesterday" is now actually "today" because the word "yesterday" in that case would have been referring to tomorrow since I would have had to wait until the day after tomorrow to get this posted if I hadn't been able to figure out how to get it posted tomorrow (which would have been "today" according to the post date) which would have made today the day before yesterday but none of that matters because I figured it all out and got it posted tonight. Ta-Da!

**PS Verizon, 160 characters? WTF?

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day 3

Hey I think I figured this out!!!! Apparently the way to post in the actual post field (as opposed to putting up a title then using the comment field for the post since it's the only freaking way you can figure out how to pull up the little keyboard thingy on your husband's iTouch) is to switch to "edit HTML" mode rather than that other mode up there. Posting problem solved; now to figure out a more consistent charging method. Oh, and forgive the spelling/editing, please? My fingers are fatter than they appear and I still can't figure out how to scroll with this thing!

Today we did a tour of several of the parks on our former daily routes. Paulumbo was still closed and locked up when we got there so rather than wait for someone with keys to show up, we headed over to Three Bears. When I get home I'll post some pics to show just how much LG has grown since our last visit there. For now, suffice it to say he had no trouble with that rock wall thing that used to challenge and frustrate him so. From there we wandered over to Franklin Square, stopping along the way to watch the horses around Independence Mall and to shuffle through the leaves. The carousel was down for a still to be determined time, so we headed back to our hotel. We stopped at the Wawa on 10th & Arch (or is it Arch & 10th?) for a couple of Hodges and a cup pf soup. After LG's nap, we caught the R3 to Rose Valley and hung out with some of the people who are high on the list of reasons we miss this incredible city so much. The only cloud in the days events was feeling inadequate when it came to explaining to LG why someone was sleeping on sidewalk. I am so torn with emotion when it comes to the homeless people, especially here, for some reason. Maybe because I never had to think about their misfortune on a daily basis until we lived here. Now that we've moved back to the cloistered safety of suburbia the reality of my relative luxury is a bit unnerving. Say what you will about socialism, there is something inherently wrong with a society that doesn't instinctively react to help when so many of it's citizens are without the basics of food and shelter. I don't know what the answer is, but clearly the current response falls far short. Shy of carrying a pocketful of singles... the helplessness lies in the reality that my pocketful of help would fall far short of an actual solution. Sigh.

But today was glorious- walking along the familiar streets and taking in that comforting kaleidoscope of sights, sounds, and smells reminded me why I fell in love with this city in the first place.

'nother bit o' happiness


Hope your tricks were all treats!


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change

Someone brilliant wrote

I don't expect Obama to do everything he proposes in the next four years. I don't really want him too. That's an awful lot. But if he can pull off paving the way for change I will consider his presidency a success. I am more than willing to make little sacrifices over the next few years if it means my child won't have to suffer or struggle when he is old enough to realize what is going on outside his front door.
I didn't take LG with me to the polls yesterday as I had intended. I could barely pull my head off my pillow for most of the day. I wish I had sent him with his father, to give him the gift of being part of something so monumental. But I was thankful that I had decided to mail in my ballot last week so that I could count my vote amongst the millions of happy, hopeful people who woke this morning with the sweet aftertaste of victory on their tongues.

Change.

Even just the suggestion of change. Even if the suggestion is only enough to make people think about change. If old stereotypes and prejudices are examined, even momentarily, even if they are picked back up and hidden behind again, even then, this change will have been worthwhile. Each question will weaken the status quo, each scrutiny will uncover some hole in its armor and eventually it will crumble, leaving behind it room for new, healthy growth.

Another brilliant writer reminded me of why this feels so important, so much more than any other election I've been a part of
Like him or don’t, agree with him or don’t. Despise his politics and fight to get him out, but celebrate. Because a man born into a segregated America in which black people were systematically denied the vote in ten states today was elected president of them all.

I am so proud to have been a part of this, however small.


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