Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Ancient History, Volume VI

All week, I've been thinking "I really must remember to take a photo for the 30 Day Photography Challenge. Now, where's my camer...oh. Right." *SIGH* (If you have no idea what I'm talking about go here) So in place of that, you get the next instalment of me travelling around the place a millionty years ago, meeting completely insane people. Because apparently THAT'S WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I TRAVEL.

Anyway, when I last left off, Megan and I were boarding a bus from Washington DC to Philadelphia. Public service announcement: Do not catch buses in America. Sure, it might only cost you $20, but you will be surrounded by crazy people. There was a woman on the bus whose hair bore a striking resemblance to a Christmas tree. And there was a guy who took phone call on speaker phone for the entire duration of the trip. Somehow, I managed to fall asleep and I woke up when we stopped in Delaware. That weirded me out, because my geography of the tiny American states is not that great, and I thought Delaware was up near Massachusetts and that we'd missed Philly completely. #FAIL

We hadn't. We eventually arrived in Philly, and caught a taxi to our hotel, which turned out to be something like three blocks from the bus station. (Thanks a lot, Taxi Driver from 2006, for not telling us that we could have walked there in five minutes. One of these days, I'm going to find a TARDIS, come back to 2006, and kick you in the shin. #fairwarning)

Somehow, we ended up staying a reasonably swanky hotel for like $100 a night. Wheeeeeeee!! We did all the usual history nerd Philadelphia things.
Independence Hall

The Liberty Bell

Congress Hall

And Benjamin Franklin's grave. That one we walked to, and then discovered upon arrival that you had to pay $3 to get into the cemetery. And for some reason, we decided that $3 was way too much to spend on something like that, so we shoved our cameras through the fence to take photos, and then left. I don't remember if we flicked a penny at him or not. It seems a little disrespectful, so hopefully not!

Then Archaeology Nerd Kirsti appeared, and insisted that we walk half way across Philadelphia to go to the University of Pennsylvania Archaeology Museum. Do not attempt this. According to Google Maps, it's about three miles. And it's quite an...industrial...walk. I'm still kind of surprised we weren't run over by a semi-trailer...

Once we eventually found it, the museum itself was pretty cool. There was all manner of Egyptian stuff:

And this crystal ball doohicky. I still don't know what it is:

Aaaaaaand that's pretty much all we did in Philly. According to my travel diary, we went all out for dinner on both nights - Panda Express at the food court of a nearby shopping mall. SO. CLASSY. I have no idea why we didn't go to the art museum like normal tourists. Or why we didn't try to find slightly more appetising food. I'm sorry, Philly. I'm sure you have more to offer than Panda Express!!

The following morning, we boarded a bus for New York. And arrived five minutes ahead of schedule, meaning we didn't get to see the end of some horse movie called Dreamer starring Dakota Fanning. It still pisses me off that I don't know what happened. But the movie was pretty terrible, so I'm not about to borrow it and find out!

Upon arrival at Port Authority (yet another reason not to take the bus in America - bus stations are really NOT the best first impression of cities!), we walked a millionty blocks across town to our hotel. Where I got into the lift with my pack on and then realised that I couldn't turn around without giving Megan concussion. And when we arrived at our room (which was over $200 a night), we discovered that the entire thing was basically the size of Megan's closet in Tennessee. If you took more than two steps from the door, you'd trip over the bed and fall out the window onto the footpath five storeys down.

So we abandoned our luggage in the hotel room, and headed out in search of food. And to avoid going back to our hotel, we went to the Empire State Building, which was only a few blocks away.
From the door of the hotel

Ever so slightly blurry night time shot from the top

Next up, the rest of New York, including a small fire, and some very memorable quotes from passersby.

K xx


  1. Ha, your comment about the buses made me laugh. Yes, there are always crazy people on buses, but I didn't realize that was specifically an American thing! There's a How I Met Your Mother episode where Ted says that if you can't spot the crazy person on the bus, it's you.

    1. I haven't caught any long haul buses in Australia, so I can't give you an opinion on that. But all the people on long haul buses in Peru were reasonably normal... The crazy person on those buses was most definitely not us!! :)

  2. When I went to Philadelphia all I did was eat 2 philly cheesesteaks. Now I feel like I should have done more. lol.

    1. Okay, now I feel better about the fact that I didn't really give Philadelphia a proper chance! ;)

  3. Who are you calling a crazy-travel-meetup? Hahahaha!

    Well, I guess we did awesomely well with the good value hotel in NY last year then, judging by the experience above :-D

    1. You're a travelling companion - they're exempt from crazy-travel-meetup status! THAT is reserved for random strangers who make an impression. Like Robot Bus Boy. Or the security guard at the Smithsonian who told me I was hot.

      And yes, we did incredibly well with the hotel in New York! The hotel Megan and I stayed at was in an excellent location, but the room was indescribably tiny...


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