The Streets of Philadelphia

I was in Philadelphia for a business conference the first full week in October. I arrived as early as possible on Sunday and had a few hours of daylight in which to see as much as I could. I managed to visit Independence Hall and see the Liberty Bell. Here are a few highlights.

The spire atop Independence Hall.
Left: Weathervane atop Independence Hall. Right (Top & Bottom): Pennsylvania Supreme Court Chamber.
Top: Assembly Room where the delegates from the 13 colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence. Bottom: The black walking stick belonged to Thomas Jefferson. Right: Independence Hall was the site of many key events in American history.
The inscription reads, “Proclaim Liberty throughout all the Land unto all the Inhabitants thereof” Leviticus 25:10.
Left: The Liberty Bell weighs 2,080 pounds, is made of bronze and its strike note is an E-flat. (Source: Top: A historical building covered with ivy. Bottom: The eternal flame at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Left: A tiled mosaic covered the facade of a building on South Street. Right: The bell last rang in 1846 to celebrate George Washington’s birthday. (Source:
Statue of Benjamin Franklin on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania.

Should you find yourself in Philly, I highly recommend these historic sites. The National Park Service provides information on operating hours and things to see and do. If you plan to visit Independence Hall, you will need tickets. They are free but you have to reserve them.

More Reasons Why I ❤ NY

Here are more pictures from our trip to New York City. Besides the huge skyscrapers and art deco buildings, sculptures and other architectural details caught my eye. Here is a random sampling of some of them.

Who can resist Times Square? With its energy and buzz, it's quintessential New York and a people-watching paradise.
On the 50th Street side of Radio City Music Hall, there are three large plaques that represent the main activities inside - "Dance, Drama and Song." This one is "Drama."
At 30 Rockefeller Plaza, directly in front of the famous ice-skating rink, is "Wisdom" (1933).
Flanking "Wisdom" are "Sound and Light" (1933). These stylized panels represent new technologies of the times - radio (sound) and television (light). This one is "Light."
"Saint Francis of Assisi with Birds" (1937) sits above a building entrance on 50th Street.
At the viewing area at the "top of the rock" you can see these large metal panels up close. I halfway expected to see the bat signal floating up in the sky over "Gotham City."
This tiled panel was appropriately located at the 50th Street subway stop near the Theater District. It is part of the "Alice: The Way Out" tile work by Liliana Porter (1994).
Subway stops are labeled by colorful tile mosaics, like this one at the 116th Street-Columbia University stop.
A stone rosette adorns either side of the entrance to Low Memorial Library, a National Historic Landmark, on the Columbia University campus.

To learn more about some of the artwork, try these links: Rockefeller Center, NYC Subway Art Guide.


I ❤ NY

I bravely spent 5 days of Spring Break in New York City with two teenagers. We saw the typical touristy sights, but oh, what sights to see! These are some of the images I was able to capture.

Manhattan skyline from the top of the Rockefeller Center. I touched up the photograph a bit to better see the outlines of the buildings in the Financial District (in the background).
The top of the Empire State Building looks mysterious. Of course, it's just hidden behind the smog.
View of the Manhattan Bridge from the Brooklyn Bridge.
Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge toward Manhattan.
Spire of the Manhattan Municipal Building as seen from the Brooklyn Bridge.
One of the reflecting pools at the 9/11 Memorial.
Construction in progress at 1 World Trade Center.
One of the spires of St. Patrick's Cathedral.
The iconic bronze statue of Atlas in front of the Rockefeller Center.
View of the city lights at night. Taken from the top of the Empire State Building.