Girard's Farm

If I could have a super power, I've often said I would choose the ability to observe a place where I am standing in any point and time. This wish originated during hours of looking out the window of R2 train, which runs from Philadelphia to Wilmington. The train runs through Chester, then Marcus Hook, both port towns that have seen better days, and then along the Delaware River. I'd daydream about what it must have looked like before the Swedes settled this area. Then what did it look like as industry started to scatter along the river?

Below are a few pictures from xzmattzx's, well, really nice photo tour of Marcus Hook on Skyscraper City.

the beautiful American Viscose Company building

I want it.

But I digress. The title of this post refers to my new neighborhood, Girard Estate, defined as the area between Passyunk and Oregon and Broad and 22nd St. So I am living on Stephen Girard, once the richest man in America's, land. This whole neighborhood was once a 583 acre farm, named Gentilhommiere, full of exotic fruit trees and vegetables imported from Europe.

Now, the house sits alone, in the center of a small city park. I was really surprised the first time I saw it.
from pwbaker's excellent flickr set of the farmhouse

Around it is a shady, quiet, almost suburban, and not at all typical south philly neighborhood, that I walk through whenever I have the chance. If you're interested there's a guide on the architecture of the neighborhood here.

Adventure Adventure

Adventure adventure...both on screen and in real life. Exploration in new lands. That is the theme of today's post.

:: from the Carter Studios website ::

Yesterday, we went to visit my good friends Mike and Jess of Carter Studios. Jess and I were roomies in college. It made me very happy to see them again. They are both incredible designers and artists, working in a variety of materials.


They took us on a tour of their incredible studio/live space in the old Globe Dye Works factory. The place is in the midst of being converted into artist's studios. Very exciting.

On screen, we've been watching hours and hours of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations and Michael Palin: Pole to Pole. I fondly remember watching Pole to Pole on PBS years ago (I was a huge Monty Python fan in my teen years) and now realize how indebted these newer travel shows like No Reservations are to this classic. They're both guaranteed to make you long for exotic landscapes (the fjords!) and very very hungry.

:: anthony bourdain ::

:: michael palin ::

And what do you need to go on an adventure? A good satchel. I've become smitten with the designs from two etsy shops, Cotton Petal from Scotland and Wooly Bison who makes wonderful bags out of recycled wool clothing. I'm torn between the choice of getting a smaller bag or something that will carry my laptop. Any thoughts?

:: cotton petal ::

:: wooly bison ::

Once I have my satchel, it's off to the fjords for me.