On Monday a week ago on our daily jaunt to downtown Philadelphia My Jane and I arrived at the Schuylkill (we join the expressway at Plymouth Meeting)
aware that something was different. While merging on to the expressway from the 476 on ramp I discovered what was different about this moment. When I checked the side mirror there were no cars to be seen. Checking the rear view mirror there were no cars visible. My head began spinning around looking for the cars. They had to be there! But, there wasn’t one car beside or behind us. I looked forward and saw only three cars spread out before us. I thought, “Wait a minute! This might be a mirage!” I shook my head and blinked several times. Nothing changed. I knew I wasn’t dreaming because my dreams are more like nightmares. We definitely were not in a nightmare. As we left Plymouth Meeting exit behind, My Jane said, “This doesn’t feel like 55 miles per hour.” I don’t know how she would know that feeling, on the Schuylkill, because it is a rare moment we actually manage to move at that speed down the road. I glanced at the speedometer and allowed that we certainly were not going nearly as slow as 55 miles per hour. (My lips are sealed.)
Then I thought, maybe we were not in Philadelphia on the Schuylkill. Maybe we made a wrong turn somewhere and this was some other town with a four lane highway and a population of less than 5,000 people. But, no, we were passing the exit sign for Manayunk. (The photo was taken on a ‘normal’ travel day.) Then we passed the sign to Wissahicken (Normal travel day, again.) and next came Lincoln Drive. (Another normal day photo.) This definitely was Philadelphia.
Well, maybe we went through a time warp that transported us to some other year! Thinking back I remembered a moment on the trip back near Lansdale where I suddenly realized I had not been paying much attention! We might have been transported to an earlier time in that moment.
The sounds coming from the car speakers were 60’s songs being played by DJ Phlash Phelps “Puff The Magic Dragon”, “Surf City”, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” – which could mean we were in a former time. This could be 1967 or 68! But no, that wasn’t it. We were listening to Sirius satellite radio. In 1967 we didn’t have satellite radio. We had Sputnik, of course. (launched in 1957) Sputnik did transmit radio waves but not the kind with music for our listening enjoyment.
I thought, well, we better enjoy this moment while it last because it may never happen again! Oh look, there is the Philadelphia skyline a good ten minutes before usual. Groovy! This was the best trip ever into Philadelphia.
See you next time.