Having a part 1 blog entry is quite binding to have a part 2. So, here is the part 2. On Saturday, we went to visit both Princeton and Philadelphia. Princeton was a short 30 minute drive from my parents place to the borough and township of Princeton. The campus is quite elegant, although it is lacking in much of the Ivy that my parents seem to have remembered it having. The building we saw were all in the quasi-gothic, vaulted ceiling, ornate support pillars and stone style. Given that the buildings were build in the early 1800s, it’s hardly surprising. Definitely different than the modern glass and steel buildings of UCSD that have names such as EBU1 (= Engineering Building Unit 1).
After Princeton, it was an hour or so until Philadelphia (along the 95, over the Delaware and past Sesame Street amusement park). Downtown Philly is impressive scene. It’s quite a bit bigger than I remembered it (AAA says it’s around 4.5 million in the area). We drove past City Hall on Market street through the main downtown area. Cool downtown, lots of stores, bars and offices. We parked near Independence Hall, went and saw the Liberty Bell then saw the Hall itself. Lots more security than I remember (of course), and the Liberty Bell had been relocated to a new building. The old one which it used to be housed in has become the x-ray and metal detector room.
We walked past the Constitution building and the Philadelphia Mint on the way to Betsy Ross’s old house. After realizing there was an entrance fee, we went down to Elfrish Alley which is the oldest inhabited area in the nation. The alley is probably about 10 or 15 houses long, full of little quaint homes and little gardens. Reminded me of parts of Antwerp. After walking back to the car and driving through Society Hill (and all the really nice houses there), we headed back to NJ.