Luck / Living in Philly

by cecimadden

I usually like a cloudless sky, but this sky on Saturday was just incredible: dusk-ish, sunbeams shooting beneath fluffy cloud forms.  I drove by – snapped this photo – and thought about how lucky I am.  I had that thought quite a bit this weekend.  Between all of our activities on Saturday: shopping with Rachel, an afternoon bridal shower, then our much-awaited date night, I thought over and over of how fortunate I am to live this life, to be in this family and live in this city. 

Philly gets a bad rap, I think.  I give it a bad rap sometimes.  Admittedly, it’s been a bit of a love/hate relationship.  My first year in this city was pretty lonely in many ways.  I was surrounded by lots of people, doing good work, but there was no family around (and no sense of family) and I was slowly, unconsciously losing my sense of self.  It was overwhelming.

As I expected myself to be, I was constantly broke, but some days I would have a little extra money in my pocket and I would go to the Spaghetti Warehouse, which was nearby my apartment at the time, and treat myself to lunch.  It sounds lame as I’m recounting it now, but something about it reminded me of normalcy with just a splash of indulgence which was a great comfort at the time.  I would sit and bask in the anonymity of eating alone and as the waiter would try to hurry me through my meal I’d be sure to consider what I wanted for dessert.

Recently, they closed down the restaurant.  I don’t think a single person in Philadelphia was sad about it.  There was much speculation as to what the building, a cavernous old warehouse formerly used to house train trestles, would become, and eventually it became a concert venue.  And that is where we ended up on Saturday night to see The Heartless Bastards.

Jim made sure to get some gritty pictures:

The place was totally transformed, yet familiar.  These pictures are from the cool lobby/bar area, where we hung out for most of the opening acts.

The show itself was absolutely incredible.  The Heartless Bastards are actually a band that Jim was introduced to when he saw them live in Portland (the same year as my first year in Philly).  It was his own little indulgence in a similarly themed year on the opposite end of the country.  We both love this band now, and we both savored the experience.  There’s something intimate about seeing live music with a loved one, isn’t there? 

We’ll definitely do this more often.

After dinner we ran across the street over to Silk City diner, a beloved Philly landmark even as it’s reinvented itself over time.  We ate and talked late into the morning and it was not like old times at all.   It was entirely new.  We are entirely new.  And even though I feel old sometimes and like I’ve been with this man forever, and lived in this city too long, I am still just learning who I am, and we are barely learning who we are as a couple and a family, and the city is giving us ways to learn it and each other anew.

How lucky for all of us.