2 Weeks in the Northeast – Day 3

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Day 3 – June 24th, 2019 – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Washington, DC: ~145 miles

Missed Day 2? – June 23rd, 2019 – Brooklyn, New York to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: ~135 miles

After a wonderful evening of catching up with Spurgeon, Vy and I started the next morning by hitting up a couple of Philadelphia icons that we didn’t have time for the day before. When we plan these trips, Vy comes up with a list of all the things she’d like to see. We know we’re not going to be able to check off everything, but it gives us something to shoot for. One of her Philly stops was the staircase of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, which was made famous in the movie Rocky. After she ran up the steps, Baby Jack wanted to stop by the statue.

We also had to get a cheesesteak. There’s lots of good options, but we settled on Pat’s.

I appreciated the no-nonsense attitude of the ordering instructions:

The same attitude applies towards the “soda tax.”

We got a steak “wit” onions and cheez whiz. It doesn’t look particularly appealing, but it was delicious.

This sign was preposterously large. There wasn’t much room for the semi to pass under!

I got a laugh out of the “Nana Bus” sign, and was glad to see that a Nana was indeed driving it.

Speaking of signs, the Fell’s Point neighborhood of Baltimore had the right idea about Prohibition (it faintly says Vote Against Prohibition). This is what’s left from when the paint was freshly applied in the 20s.

Also in Baltimore: the intersection of low and high.

The thing Vy might have been most interested about in Baltimore was Mr. Trash Wheel. The actual name is the “Inner Harbor Water Wheel”, but the name bestowed upon it by locals is much better. It’s just a simple water wheel powered by the river that scoops up trash from the river and drops it into a dumpster barge (if the water current is too weak, solar panels provide additional power). When the dumpster is full, the city takes it away and puts in a new one. It’s a cheap and effective way to deal with pollution, but it’s also weirdly popular simply because the designers put some eyes on the thing. Click here for more information, or click here for a live stream.

It’s been a very successful project, and there are now multiple members of the Trash Wheel “family”. They’ve collected plenty of things you’d expect – over 649 thousand plastic bags and over 11.3 million cigarette butts, for examples. But they’ve also collected a keg, a guitar, and a ball python! I presume this little birdy is particularly glad that the python is nowhere near the water.

This isn’t a visually interesting photo, but it’s the cheapest gas we saw all trip!

Did you know that the “Nipper” logo made famous in the RCA logo was based on an actual dog of the same name from the 1880s? He was named because he would “nip” at people’s legs, and the iconic logo is an evolution of a painting that was created 3 years after Nipper passed away. The painting has Nipper listening to a Edison-Bell phonograph, but when the owner/painter presented the painting to the manager of the company, he said “Dogs don’t listen to phonographs.” A manager at The Gramophone Company later said that if the painter replaced the phonograph with a Berliner disc gramophone, that he would buy the artwork. You can guess what happened next. Click here for more details on this cute story.

I like to tease Vy every once in a while for being short, but these parking meters in front of the Nipper statue make her look like a giant!

We both wanted to spend much more time in Baltimore, but we had to be in DC that night. En route, we encountered our first rain of the trip, and it highlighted one of the strengths of the RT – protection from the elements. We had only been on the RT for 2 days, but I went into this trip with the mindset that I would much prefer a GS. Rain was one situation in which the RT gets a point – with the power windshield up at its top setting, I felt just about invincible in moderate to heavy rain. I just wish I was allowed to split lanes!

The RT kept Vy and I dry through intermittent rain, and we got to DC without a hitch. We met up with a high school friend of mine for dinner at A Rake’s Progress, which was quite fancy.

My friend and her husband have a wonderful dog named Gulliver, who wasn’t in the mood for tricks. Vy and I found that highly amusing:

He sure looks great next to the bike, though!

Photo by Amanda Donaldson

Vy and I succumbed to the preponderance of ice cream shops out in the east, and then we retired back to Amanda’s place.

Something else the Northeast gets more of than California is fireflies. This was the first time Vy had ever seen them in person, and she loved it.

We stayed up late so that Vy could film a self-tape for an audition, and finally got to sleep around 2am. Tomorrow we head towards Pittsburgh!

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