Saturday, January 30, 2010

Philly and Boston Part 1

The past 4 days I've been to Philadelphia and Boston. Never been to either before.

There are a lot of things I could write about: the hotels, the cities, the people, the experience, the toll roads, the history...

Let's start with the cities.


The city was built pretty compact (at least in the area I was in). There were a lot of skyscrapers, underground parking garages, historical sites, museums and entertainment centers built all within a 2 or 3 mile circumfrence. You could start at Independence Hall and walk 4 blocks and be at the State House. Looking from the State House you could look in all directions at very modern (and tall) skyscrapers. Walk another 4 blocks and you would be in the heart of the edcuation district, with libraries, parks/monuments, museums and art institutes.

The people were fairly friendly in Philadelphia...although one lady me and Beau ran into made a fairly poor assumption. Let's just keep it at that...

I think that Philly will give DC and Miami a run for their money for having the least patient drivers. They love their horns. It's like drag racing, where its a reflex of green light to gas pedal. In Philadelphia, its green light to horn reaction time.

We did get to see Body Worlds 2 at the Franklin Museum. Kind of creepy, but definitly an experience you should have if you go to Philly between now and April 18. Not as long to get through as I was thinking it would (took us about 75 minutes, and we were going slow) but for $19, it's not bad.

And I can say I had an authentic philly cheesesteak sandwhich. It was good.


Boston is much more spread out than Philly. And there seems to be at least 20 universities and colleges just in Boston. We spent our time mostly in the financial district (give a mile in any direction from there). Never got to get over to the MIT side of Boston, but I made it a priority to see Fenway Park first. When there are baseball games there, it must be a madhouse. Fenway probably takes up less room than Capital City Stadium in Columbia, SC, is lined with restraunts, bars, and even a high school directly across from the stadium (I would have never passed high school had I gone there).

I got to walk the city by myself on Thursday and saw a few historical sites. Also got to see where the Bruins and Celtics play. We did get slammed by a snow storm Thursday night, but it was actually pretty cool.

Surprisingly, there are quite a few parts of downtown Boston where it's quiet. Kind of eerie. But judging by the cars parked along the road and the way the townhouses look, you need to have a net worth in excess of $2 million to live in that area...just my guess.

Personally, I liked Boston better than Philly, but maybe I'm biased being a Red Sox fan. And in neither city did I ever feel unsafe. I actually felt safer walking the streets of these cities than I do walking up Gervais Street in front of the State House in Columbia (then again, these were the very upscale areas). Go figure...

Toll Roads:

I got to say that there is no way I could have spent less than $70 on toll fees. The roads are very well kept on these roads, but damn...cut me some slack! Aren't these roads originally paved with taxpayer dollars through the Federal Highway Funds which are taxed through gasoline taxes? Maybe the idea behind it is to keep gridlock down, charge drivers to use the roads, which will cut down on unnecessary trips. I don't know, but I know this: To hell with toll roads.

Well, it's 1 a.m. and I am very tired. No sleep last night and drove for 8 hours today. I'll finish the rest of this later...probably on Monday.

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