Monday, January 6, 2014

It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Except that's a lie)

(I wrote this post the week before Christmas, and somehow never managed to post it...)

My heart is heavy while I write this recap post from my trip to Philly (over a month later). When my friend Sarah moved to Philly, she moved in with her grandparents, who lived outside the city, while she looked for a roommate/an apartment. Having lost all 4 of my grandparents already, I loved being in Sarah's grandparents home, with her sweet grandmother (who was battling cancer) and her sweet grandfather, too. While I was there, her grandmother fixed us a delicious meal with her famous crab cakes, while they told us stories about their vacations all over the world (all 7 continents)! I was devastated to find out that Sarah's grandmother passed away Tuesday night. She was such a sweet, sweet woman, full of life, and made me miss my grandmothers.
Sarah's Grandparents' home
I flew in late Friday night, so by the time we found my luggage at the airport and got back to the house, we both just wanted to grab dinner, catch up, and crash. But of course no time spent with Sarah is lacking a glass of wine and an episode of Scandal!

We were up early Saturday so we could take the train into the city.
We started out at Reading Terminal Market, in the hopes of finding a beer tasting Sarah had heard about. After wandering around the entire market, we stumbled upon the tasting, and I found my favorite beer ever on tap. Day. made.
It was a chilly day in Philly, so we combined sight-seeing with little pleasures to thaw out from the cold. We took a walk by City Hall and the LOVE statue (which is disappointedly tiny, by the way) before finding a salon to get manicures (another Charlotte/Sarah ritual). We then headed further into Center City to look at an apartment for Sarah on the cutest street. We ducked into Monk's, a cozy cafe which was just like the ones I went to in Belgium, for a pot of warm mussels.

Then it was off to Old City for the historical sites!
We stopped in Washington Square to see the Eternal Flame and the tomb of the unknown soldier, then walked to Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell (which is now inside, which is also dissapointing).

We met up with Sarah's friends afterwards, had dinner at Triumph Brewing Company, and then went out on the town. It's safe to say no pictures were taken for the rest of the evening!

Late Sunday, a coworker flew in to Philly and we headed to New Jersey for work, but due to lucky circumstances, we got to head back to Philly earlier than expected Tuesday to catch our flight out! One last night out in Philly at El Vez (delicious Mexican food) was complete with 2 middle-of-the-night fire alarms. But hey, complaining works, and I got our hotel rooms for free!
We couldn't go all the way to Philly without getting a philly cheese steak from Pat's, but I have to say, one is probably enough for me for a very long time!

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