Sunday, April 22, 2012

Why we love living aboard a boat

When we lived on land (condo or house), we barely knew our neighbors. People schedule their lives up the ying yang so they can't do anything without consulting their appointment calendar.

Living aboard a boat at a marina is totally carefree and laidback. People come and go. For instance, a couple left last week for the Bahamas to help bring their friends' boat back to Florida. Another just left to sail from N. Carolina to the Keys. Last weekend, there was a surprise birthday party for a fellow boater. And last night, a farewell party for another. From spring to fall, there's usually something happening at the marina on the weekends. You get to meet people from all over and from all walks of life; you relax; you party. Life is good. And if you don't like your neighbors or the view or whatever, you can just untie your lines and move to another marina! These are some of the reasons we have lived aboard Mai Thai for over ten years, five in Chattanooga alone.

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Slice of Paris in Philadelphia

Did you know that the Benjamin Franklin Parkway was designed by a French architect, and he modeled it after the Avenue des Champs-Élysées in Paris?
The Benjamin Franklin Parkway, as seen from the museum

The Philadelphia Museum of Art
Unlike the famed Parisian avenue, there aren't any chic luxury shops on the Parkway, but you'll find plenty of arts and culture, some of which include the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Franklin Institute, the Rodin Museum, the Swann Fountain, and the Cathedral Basilica of Sts Peter and Paul. On May 19, a new museum created by the Barnes Foundation will join these Philadelphia icons on the Parkway. For those of you living in Philly, don't miss the 10-day grand opening. The weekend of May 26 is packed with events and activities. Check their website for information on tickets and schedule.
Philadelphia City Hall; you might recognized this scene from the comedy Trading Places
Writing my recently published article, Weekend Getaway: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, brought back many many wonderful memories. I've enjoyed the Mummer's Parade on a freezing January, watched in awe the amazing exhibits at the Franklin Institute, and mimicked Rocky running up the 72 steps to the Museum of Art. I've gotten naturalized at Old City Hall (home of the First Supreme Court), the building on the left of Independence Hall, and tied the knot at Valley Forge (near the Historical National Park where General George Washington of the Continental Army camped out during that brutal winter of 1777-78). We used to hike the Wissahickon Valley in the fall, and escape the summer heat tubing down the Delaware River in nearby Bucks County. Ahh, the good old days...

Forever etched in my memory is the experience of eating the most delicious hoagie for the first time. And the Philadelphia cheesesteak. My mouth is watering as I ponder the juicy, scrumptious Philadelphia sandwich. Simply unforgettable!
You won't go hungry in Philly. This local joint, Geno's, is open 24/7
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