Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Remembering North Wales

Nine years ago, 1999, I spent enough time in North Wales, Pa to have my own apartment. But I have not been back here since late November of that year. I say "here" because that is where I am staying tonight. I had mixed feelings about doing this gig for no other reason than I was not sure I could still do the Philly airport, the National car rental, the 35 mile drive in traffic to Chalfont (just outside of North Wales)...from memory like I used to. Well, after getting here all I can say is, "No Problem."

We flew in over South Jersey coming in, made a couple of turns and there I was looking at the old familiar sights: downtown Philly, the Ben Franklin Bridge, the Walt Whitman Bridge, the remnants of the Ship Yard and the airport. I remembered where to get the National shuttle, I remembered where to go to sign up for a car (it had not changed at all) and when I left the parking lot, I remembered how to get on I-95 South. Turn by turn, it all came tumbling back.

I snaked up the "Blue Route" past all the familiar names: Swarthmore, Upper Darby, Blue Bell, Germantown, King of Prussia. I knew enough to stay off the I-76 route to Conshohocken (The Skuylkil Expressway) and to just skirt the PA Turnpike.

I went through Spring House and saw the big restaurant we used to take VIPs to, and before you know it, I was at the Courtyard. It took an hour, but it was a trip into nostalgia-ville.

Tomorrow I work, then I run the route backwards and fly five hours back to Portland...non-stop again, which is nice...and then home. Whew...what a trip.

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