Wednesday, February 21, 2007


4 am comes very, very early in the morning. That's when we left home to get to Philadelphia. The trip up was pretty uneventful and we missed the majority of all the traffic. We got to the hospital just fine and Trystan had his exam. We can't get him a new brace for his leg since the muscles are too tight to move his foot to a neutral position. We have to return in 3 months after working with him on muscle stretching exercises. if those don't work, we're onto more extreme treatment methods. I really hope the stretches and exercises work.

Have I ever mentioned how much I love Philadelphia? I've heard all kinds of horrible things about it, and while it has it's problems, It is a great town. I've spent time there with friends who lived in the area and there is nothing like it I've ever experienced. Where else are you going to go and find buildings all over the place that look like this:

There is art, culture, bustling streets, open air markets, and oddly enough, smiling faces. People here are friendly in their gruff urban way. People here will actually smile at you on the street. Walk through a neighborhood in Philadelphia and it's equally likely you'll be pinned by an aging Italian man extolling the virtues of a strong marriage or be confronted by an artists studio pouring out of a garage. You can sit on your stoop in the evening and chat with the neighbors. Then you can walk to a corner hole in the wall restaurant where the food is like that your grandmother made, and it can be a year since you were there last and the staff still remember your name. I won't say that you can't find the typical urban filth. There are drugs, there are gangs, there is that lovely city stench. There is also an underlying current of community in everything. I wouldn't go so far as to say it is Brotherly Love as the city's motto states, but maybe just a love of your city. Pride in it. I love that.

After T's appointment I took hubby to Gennaro's on South Street for an authentic Philly Cheese Steak. The boy got a pizza burger.

Mmmmmmm. Pizza burger.

We also managed to hit not just one, but two yarn shops!

We stopped by Loop. This store is beautiful. The yarns are arranged by makers an colors against a white backdrop. It looks like a gallery, not a yarn shop. The fibers are luscious. Silks, cashmeres, alpacas, the softest wools. It was so gorgeous though I was a bit afraid to touch things. I know when I chose the yarns I wanted and had to dig a bit to find the skeins, the delightful shop girls came behind me to artfully rearrange for the missing skeins. Honestly, it was a bit overwhelming. I did score some delightful yarns though.

Schaefer Anne. The colors in this are to die for, and the subtle shifts in color are delicious. I foresee a shawl in this. It's just enough for a swallowtail. One of the girls in the shop showed me a sock she's been working on in Anne in a different colorway. It was so soft and silky feeling. Positively sinful.

I also picked up a skein of Malabrigo in Curacao and a skein of Silk Garden, which is not pictured here.

Love, love love these colors. an it's soooo soft.

Please note the matching skein of laceweight. I did not find that at Loop. We went further down South Street so I could show hubby around a bit, and after finally finding a parking spot we walked up and down the street. Hubby stumbled on a shop called Nangellini. For every carefully arranged cubby of yarn at loop, was an overflowing basket of fiber here. The owner, Nancy is an angel with her bright pink hair and her shop filled with art, bright skeins of yarn, finished objects and lots of comfy chairs covered in works in progress. Many of the yarns she stocks can be purchased online, and In fact I believe they were, (I spied some yarns which solidiified my resolve to finally make an order from them) but it gave me a chance to feel and fondle fibers. I picked up 2 skeins of Handpainted yarn's Laceweight including the curacao pictured above (Scribble lace perhaps?) and a skein of K1C2's Paintbox.

After a time getting out of the city preparing for Mardi Gras, we left PA and stopped in Baltimore for a quick drive around. What a total contrast in cities. For those of you who love Baltimore, I apologize in advance, but that city reminds me of an aging beauty queen. Think Mrs. Havisham. We drove through the Inner harbor area and I guess made a wrong turn down a street 3 blocks from the Inner Harbor in which hubby made a quick U-turn when he saw 3 men begin to approach our vehicle with less than welcoming looks on their faces. During our quick escape from the area we saw these two billboards right next to each other. What does this say about the city?

The sign in the distance reads "How many women have to die before domestic abuse is considered a crime?"

A hard city indeed.

Moving along we stopped in Annapolis and went to a little record store where hubby scored some Tom waits, Lou Reed and Bright Eyes Records. Then home to collapse. Hubby and I both woke up feeling sick as dogs this morning. Today will be a day for relaxing and recovering before returning to the grind tomorrow.

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