Wednesday, March 21, 2012


This past week I had the pleasure to experience the sights and sounds of Philadelphia, the birth place of American democracy.  Six months ago visiting Philadelphia was not on my” bucket list” of places to see but some opportunities are too good to pass up.  My lovey wife was making the trip to attend a conference and invited me to tag along.  Besides, after twenty-five years of marriage, if nothing else, I have become a skilled baggage handler.

Things I learned while wandering the streets of the city:

  • If you have an interest in history, Philadelphia is the place to visit.  The city is the home of Independence Hall where representatives from twelve of the thirteen original colonies met to debate, draft, and sign the Constitution.  The interior of the hall is rather small but given that there was no central heating in the 1700s it should come as no surprise.


  • The Liberty Bell was originally known as the State House bell when the Pennsylvania Assembly ordered it in 1751 to commemorate the 50-year anniversary of  Pennsylvania's original Constitution.  The Liberty Bell gained iconic importance in 1851 when abolitionists, in their efforts to end slavery, adopted it as a symbol of their fight.  Today it is a favorite photo op for tourists; it was very entertaining watching visitors compose and shoot their Facebook moments!


  • The city’s  buildings represent just about every major architectural style known from the 1700s to the present.  The best part is that you can see it all and not walk more than a mile in any direction.


  • The Philadelphia Museum of Art houses one of the finest collections of medieval arms and armor in the United States.  Even if art is not your thing, making a visit to see the interior of the building is well worth the price of admission.


  • Look before you cross the street because the drivers tend to be very aggressive and they make liberal use of their horns.


  • The one down side is that the noise level can be a bit overwhelming at times.  From our hotel I noticed that people were moving about the sidewalks and streets at all hours of the day and night.


If you one day get the chance to visit Philadelphia don’t pass one it, just be sure to get a map and a comfortable pair of walking shoes.


Monte Stevens said...

Yes, the big city is noisy!!

Baggage handler. I was trained in less than 25 years.Oh well. It is an interesting city. I've only been there once and enjoyed it. I took the train from the airport and walked the streets.

Steve Skinner said...

Monte, it was one of the most fun trips we have taken!

Paul said...

Hey, Steve. I've been before, but long, long ago. It is on my list of places to go this year, as my girlfriend was born and raised there and still has some folks in Philly.

Steve Skinner said...

Paul, you will love the city!

The Donut Guy said...

Drivers can be aggressive?

Oh yeah.....take a drive on the "Sure-Kill" expressway during a Friday night rush hour.

It's kinda like a video game except you can get killed for real :-)

Steve Skinner said...

We took a couple of rides in the cabs and that was an experience to say the least!!

Earl said...

I did some training in Philly long ago and had a great time. I'm sure it's changed since then but would welcome going back some time. Thanks for sharing, Steve.

Steve Skinner said...

Earl, is lots to see, do, and photograph!

Deanna said...

Philadelphia is high on my bucket list. I had a chance to go to Boston on business quite a few years back and loved the history. Philadelphia would be the icing on the cake!

Steve Skinner said...

Deanna, I agree, it would certainly ice the cake!