The Liberty Bell, and other Philadelphia things

When we arrived in Philadelphia we went to find something to eat. Not just something - specifically, a genuine original Philadelphia Cheesesteak, and our favorite place is Pat's King of Steaks! That place is always busy; the cooks spend hour after hour preparing cheesesteaks and fries. We got ours, went back to the car, and chowed down!

The next day we planned to spend the whole day in Philadelphia so we bee-lined over to see the the Liberty Bell. While we were standing in line we were able to admire Independence Hall. The last time we were here, it was covered in scaffolding; this is much better.
But we were here to see the Liberty Bell. There is something about this particular artifact that touches us both. We read about in schoolbooks, and have seen its image used over and over again as a symbol of liberty. And the original is right here, on display for everyone to see. I took about five million pictures because I never, ever want to forget what it felt like to stand in front of this old, worn, cracked bell that has been such an important part of our country's history.

The crack that made the bell "un-ringable" is not the big one everyone sees. There is another crack that starts at the top of the big crack and runs around the bell, up into the word "Liberty". And the ragged edge is from where people chipped off pieces as souvenirs. 

We stayed by the bell about twice as long as anyone else who was in line near us, but eventually we had to move on. We were on the lookout for a bathroom when we found the Reading Railroad Terminal. The terminal has been converted to a great big food court, with an amazing array of foods (plus a bathroom).
We walked through the whole thing before we went to The Original Turkey, where we shared a Turkey Club. It was a whole dinner on one sandwich: turkey, bacon, lettuce, cheese, dressing and cranberry sauce. Yummy! We also got some ice cream at L.D. Bassett. They are world famous, and the ice cream is pretty good, but truthfully, Coldstone is a little better. 

It was a great day for walking around Philadelphia. We passed three young ladies who were each pushing baby carriages - quad carriages, so they could care for four babies each. Twelve babies out for a stroll on a sunny day!

We walked past the Arch Street Meeting House, which is a Quaker church that has been in use since 1804. Guests are allowed during service but this was a weekday so it was closed. Randy tells me that we have been inside but since they don't allow pictures, I don't remember.

We went to Elfreth Alley, which the oldest continually-inhabited street in the country. It reminded us of some of the European towns we've been to - lots of narrow little house fronts lined up together, each one a little different from each other.
And behind is Bladen's Court - a little slip of land between two houses which were owned by brother-in-laws who were on different sides of the American Revolution. The guy on the British side was eventually hanged for collaboration with the enemy.

There is a Chinatown downtown, also, so we walked through that area. There is always a beautiful gate at Chinatown, and Philadelphia's Chinatown is no exception.
We didn't see anything that memorable other than some dragons that were apparently guarding a parking lot. Love this!

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