Writing this to the dulcet sounds of Paul asleep behind me on the bed.  I don’t even have to look around to know that he is stretched out from one side of it to the other.

OK–I was wrong.  He’s on his side of the bed.  But he IS zonked.

It’s been a really busy day.  I only got about four hours’ sleep, due to any or all of the following:  time zone difference, Sudafed (the real thing, not the OTC stuff), and unfamiliarity with the room.  Hopefully I will sleep well tonight.

We left the room early this morning to find breakfast–there was a gas station/foodstore nearby (“Wawa”–where do they get these names..).  Happy to say that I was able to get my usual breakfast–cereal, milk, coffee.  Got back to the room–hey’ guess who forgot to get a spoon?   Used the cover of my coffee cup to eat my cereal with.  Messy, but it got the job done.

Paul’s cousins Nadya and Ken (who we met last night) picked us up and took us to the L terminal.  They told us to be careful not to bring out our cellphones, as there are those who would snatch them right out of our hands.  Good to know.  (I checked my e-mails whenever I went to the bathroom–only place I had any privacy.)

We rode at the very back of the train, watching the world as it fell away behind us.  Lots of different types, styles and degrees of deterioration in the buildings we passed.  Row houses, some painted bright and clean, their neighbors looking like they were patched together with aluminum foil and duct tape.  Stone edifices next to bombed-out husks of buildings.  If “The Colony is ever filmed again, I think this area of Philly would be a good place to do it.

Coming out at 5th Street put us, as promised, right across from Independence Hall.  The day promised to get a good deal warmer, so I steeled myself for the coming humidity and the breathing problems it always entails.

Took lots of pictures, saw Christchurch, its cemetery (where Ben Franklin is buried–we visited his parents’ graves in Boston last October), saw the Liberty Bell, and went through the tour of Independence Hall.  We also had lunch at City Tavern, which opened its doors on the eve of the Revolution.  I asked if it was haunted, but the guys didn’t think it was. 

Had a porter which was almost, ALMOST, better than my #1 favorite beer.  Makes me want to go to Corvallis for a pint.  Eh, when I get home…

Nadya and Ken picked us up when we got back, and we went to the church where Paul’s folks got married, just to take pictures of it.  Then we went to dinner, and Paul got to have his Philly cheese-steak sandwich.  I had ribs–hadn’t had those in some time!  Yum!

Tomorrow we’re going back to Valley Forge for a quick drive-thru of what we missed, then it’s off to Lancaster and Hershey, and points in between.

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