On Saturday evening Matt and I boarded the train, destined for the annual Philadelphia auto show. There are two big train stations in the city, Market East and Suburban. As we were riding along, I asked Matt where we would be getting off. "Suburban Station," he said. "The car show is at the convention center, which is right above the station."
I would like to state for the record that it was at that moment that I heard a tiny voice inside my head say that the convention center is actually above Market East. However, since the part of my brain that tends to make sweeping navigational decisions is usually wrong, I ignored it.
The train arrived at Market East station and things suddenly became SUPER BUSY. Ninety percent of our fellow passengers exited the train, and a whole new slew boarded. Matt and I watched the remarkable exchange of passengers and marveled at WHERE ALL OF THESE PEOPLE COULD POSSIBLY BE GOING.
Once everyone had a seat, the train started chugging again and a few minutes later we arrived at Suburban. Matt and I got off the train and walked upstairs so we could find the right entrance to the convention center.
After a few moments Matt started walked a little bit slower and semi-aimlessly. Finally he said, "I'm looking for signs for the convention center. Do you see any?"
"I.......actually think the convention center is above Market East Station," I told him.
I wasn't sure what kind of reaction he would have to this major navigational error, but he laughed and shook his head and said "OH MY GOSH YOU'RE RIGHT! WHAT WAS I THINKING?"
And also, NO WONDER ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE GOT OFF AT MARKET EAST.
Matt works in the city. He gets off at Market East Station, and sees signs for the convention center, EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. I'm just going to say we chalk this one up to the fact that he was so focused on my beauty that he wasn't giving navigation his full attention.
(AND WHO COULD BLAME HIM?)
((I WAS WEARING NEW LIP GLOSS.))
Anywho after it was determined that we were in fact at the wrong train station, we walked around for approximately four more minutes while we looked for the staircase that would lead us up to the correct street.
In those four minutes we saw an older fellow running through the station violently screaming profanities at the top of his lungs, a man who had not one stitch of clothing below his belly button use a recycling container as a public restroom, and some questionable characters participate in what I am fairly certain was a drug deal.
WELCOME TO PHILADELPHIA.
After the probable drug dealing incident I squeezed Matt's hand as hard as I could and whisper-yelled through tightly clenched teeth, "I don't care what street we end up on, just find the nearest staircase and Get. Me. OUT OF HEREEE."
Once we were safe outside, we decided to walk to the convention center. It's really not too far of a walk, and we figured that we could find someplace to eat along the way. Somehow we ended up at the convention center SEVERAL BLOCKS AWAY and had not found a dinner spot. My hunger level was approximately a 4 and my cheerfulness level was approximately a -300.
I will be honest with you, the next hour or so is a bit of a blur, but before I knew it we were back on the train to Suburban Station because word on the street was that there was an Applebee's near the station where we could eat, and far be it from me to turn down a trip to Applebee's.
Applebee's had a TWO AND A HALF HOUR WAIT.
We tried the Irish pub next door.
The Italian restaurant down the block. Forty minutes. I informed the hostess that I COULD NOT WAIT FORTY MINUTES. CAN'T YOU SEE THAT I AM A WEARY TRAVELER?
And so we walked across the street to Cozi to get some sandwiches and FOR GOODNESS SAKE SOME WATER.
We ordered at the counter, found a table, and waited for them to call out our dinners.
Suddenly my tuscan chicken pesto sandwich became like a mirage in the dessert.
Matt went over to inquire as to the state of our sandwiches because HE HAD ONE GRUMPY GIRLFRIEND ON HIS HANDS. LOOK AT THAT TABLE OVER THERE, SHE IS THE ONE WITH STEAM COMING OUT OF HER EARS.
EVEN MY 3-D GLITZY LIPGLOSS HAD WORN OFF.
Matt returned to the table and I couldn't quite decipher the look on his face, but it was somewhere between extreme frustration and a resigned smile.
"Well," he said, "They have to make more bread."
And it was at that moment that my head exploded into a million tiny pieces.
I will admit that I was not operating at full capacity by that point. I was hungry and thirsty and my feet hurt and I JUST WANTED TO BE GRUMPY.
And then Matt said, "Look on the bright side, Laura! We will have extremely fresh bread!!"
Clearly we deal with hunger and exhaustion in similar fashions.
I'm happy to report that our sandwiches FINALLY, AND I DO MEAN FINALLY arrived. I devoured my tuscan chicken pesto and chips, and my mood improved and I was ready to salvage the evening.
We walked back to Suburban AND GOT ON THE TRAIN AGAIN and made it to the car show.
It was all worth it, because we ended up having a lot of fun together AND I scored some snazzy new wheels...
I don't recognize that man standing beside my new ride, but I can only imagine that he is just jealous of the fact that my car says BOSS in large silver letters.
After the car show we got back on the train and rode home. We said goodbye to the train conductors, who at that point felt like old friends, ONE LAST TIME.
And then we decided that next year we should drive to the car show.
After all, you can never go wrong driving somewhere in a yellow 'Stang with the word BOSS painted on the side.