Going Downtown, Part 1

I guess it was one of those things I took for granted coming from Philadelphia, that feeling of culture and grit tied up and twisted together into one beautiful… thing. And we spent too much time at the end living in the suburbs, that place we called “Almost Philly” where everyone dressed the part and went to places like the King of Prussia Mall instead of the 7-Eleven. It became our universe for so long, but we broke free and rediscovered the joy of downtown, if even for just three days in October.

A play, a pie, and a pint was next, an unusual way to see a local play at a little place just off of 8th and South. The premise was that everyone got a slice of pizza, a bottle of beer, and the play (if we were so inclined). The place was packed when we arrived, but we still got the guy behind the table to take our photo.

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The play was actually good too, a modern one with a lot of swearing and a few scientists. The playwright was in the audience, too, which was a joy to see, and the pizza was actually good, but one slice was nary enough. I enjoyed the beer, but I must not drink that often because the one gave me a buzz. Oh boy.

It continued later that night on 21st and South, at a place called Ten Stone, a combination bar and restaurant but more a bar than anything else really. I went with the hard cider, you know, because I could. The screen behind me had on the football game that I would have usually been watching, but I still heard it. And our server was Amanda. She had good penmanship, and a perfume that just would not go away even when she occasionally did. The ambience was classic downtown, with a good mix of blue collar and white collar coalescing into one organism.

The hard cider was good, the veggie burger in a wrap not so much. At least the conversation was good. See, I don’t get to talk to my sister, just the two of us, very often, so we just talked about anything and everything. The place reminded me of an Irish pub with its eclectic mix of music throbbing from the walls and the guys behind us singing along with it. I was singing too, and at the intersection of our voices was something that approached harmony. When we left they were still singing and I kept singing along with them in my head.

And I kept singing along with them in my head.

Sam

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