Saturday, October 11, 2008

Trip - part two

Monday was the first day of the conference so we attended the plenary and workshops. Lots of interesting things going on. We learned a lot about problems in US cities with food deserts and race issues. We also learned that in the US cider is not an alcoholic drink - apparently it's apple juice. (We'd wondered why they served it at breakfast)
As evening rolled around we decided to take a cab into Philly to explore. So we set off with no clue where to go - maps appeared to be in short supply - the driver said Market street was the best place. He dropped us off in an area that reminded us of Camden in London, lots of really cute shops and bars.
We were marginally put off eating there by the squashed dead rat in the middle of the road. We spent a good couple of hours buying gifts for our kids and window shopping then as we had been asked by virtually every inhabitant of Philly if we'd tried the cheesesteak yet, we thought we'd give it a go.
We chose a ratfree looking establishment which actually was a really nice sports bar called Fat Tuesday with friendly staff. It was huge - the bread roll it came on was at least twelve inches long. The meat wasn't like the steak we'd expected but was more the texture of dona kebab meat with what looked like yellow melted plastic on top. It tasted okay but wasn't something either of us felt we'd rush back for. I think it's probably an acquired taste.
Having done our duty via the cheesesteak we carried on meandering down Market street then Tim decided he should see if American guiness was the same as our guiness so we ended up in an Irish bar called Paddywhackers. Once inside we were shangaied by a lovely lady called Peggy to play quizo - this is the same as our pub quiz.
We didn't really think we'd do any good as the questions were naturally all about the US but as Tim needed to compare guiness samples and by now my feet were aching we felt we should have a bash. We came second - we're still not sure how.It was a really good night and Peggy and her gang made us feel very welcome in the city.
Tommorrow I'll blog about our trip to the Independence centre and Reading Terminal Market

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