Road Trippin’ … Philadelphia

Twice last season we visited the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park. And twice I made the walk from our hotel at Penn’s Landing down a few blocks to the Liberty Bell with the intention of seeing the iconic piece of American history. And twice I was deterred by an incredibly long line.

But with a bit more time at our disposal on Saturday morning, Digital Content Assistant Jeff Wroblewski (JWro to listeners of the Far Post Podcast) and I made a promise to ourselves that we’d finally see the Liberty Bell this time around. After all, this was our only scheduled visit to Philly this year.

So we strolled over toward Independence Mall around 11 a.m., fully prepared to stand in line for however long it took to see the Liberty Bell. But we caught a bit of a break because of the weather (it was bitingly cold and it snowed/rained/sleeted off and on through most of the day) so we only ended up waiting in line for 10 minutes or so.

It was a bit of an odd experience actually approaching the bell itself. There’s a long corridor filled with historical artifacts and informational posters, and at the end sits the Liberty Bell. You simply walk right up and wait for an opening so you can take your picture next to it unobstructed. Of course, both JWro and I made sure our Revs jackets were proudly displayed in our pictures.

Upon exiting the glass pavilion where the bell is housed, we wandered around Independence Mall for a brief time, stopping to take some pictures of Independence Hall (where both the Declaration of Independence and United States Constitution were drafted and signed). On another trip I’d love to take a tour. I’ve never been a huge history buff, but I find visiting historical landmarks fascinating.

Down half a block from Independence Hall was this statue of “The Signer.” But he kind of looks like he’s holding a microphone and singing, right? Just rocking out. So my initial thought was, “Oh no, they spelled ‘The Singer’ wrong!” Sometimes it takes me a while.

As lunchtime approached, I suggested we indulge in Philadelphia’s most coveted food spot. You’re probably thinking cheesesteak, but you’re wrong. I’m talking about Wawa.

Many a Pennsylvanian has raved about Wawa, which is essentially a convenience store chain. But the subs (which you order fully customized through a touch screen) are delicious and the coffee is award-winning (although I wouldn’t know since I don’t drink coffee). For those of you who’ve been, I was the idiot who didn’t realize you had to pay for the sub in advance and get your receipt stamped before they’ll actually give you the sub. Nothing like making it obvious you’re a tourist.

So that was our Saturday morning. The Liberty Bell and Wawa. Doesn’t get much more Philadelphia than that.