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Monday, November 7, 2011


On the road again...  Indy to Columbus to Niagara Falls to Cape Cod - all in the space of three days.  Then two days on Cape Cod.  Some fun time.  Some not.  But at least we have the ex out of our lives.  Wednesday, October 26th we left Cape Cod - headed toward Philly.  The last time I was there was with my real father in about 1965.  A couple of days ago - LOL.  Connie'd been there on business a few years ago but hadn't experienced much other than a real Philly cheesesteak sandwich.  I wanted to see Independence Hall.  You see, my seven-great's grandfather was a fellow named John Hart.  He signed the Declaration of Independence.  And, one of my dear friends visited Longwood Gardens a few months ago and has been telling me since that I need to go there.  Then, I found out that another friend actually does a good bit of consulting there.  He's a nationally renowned expert on glass houses.  And, they've got acres and acres of conservatories.  Last, but not least, I was given the original Winterthur cookbook in 1989.  It's got amazing color photos of part of the collection.  I couldn't wait to see all three!!  And, I really was looking forward to a real Philly cheesesteak sandwich.

Connie got online and hunted for a B and B downtown Philly.  Way pricey.  Then, we looked at the amenities and parking was $30 a night.  Nope, not doing that.  I hunted for a hotel or B and B closer to Kennett Square.  Score!  A lovely place called the Brandywine Hotel.  We got a king room with a fireplace and a jacuzzi tub and it was VERY reasonably priced.  Ok, that dilemma solved.  Now, could we get the Cape house cleaned up and get to Philly and get our gear out of the car and get to a place called MaGerks to meet a friend of Connie's for dinner?  The secret here is that the sheets have to be washed, dried and put back on the beds before heading out of the Cape house.  About 4:30 a.m. I nudged Connie enough that he headed toward the couch with the comforter.  Into the washer went the sheets.  Time to clean up the kitchen and try to get everything just the way Barbara had it.  Finally, sheets in the dryer and Kate in the shower.  Then, Connie in the shower and the bathroom cleaned.  House vacuumed and car packed.  Last, but not least, a trip to the dump.  On Cape Cod they don't have trash service so everyone has to either pay for private trash pickup or take their trash to the dump.  Done and done.

Turns out MaGerks was about two miles from the one person I really wanted to meet and didn't get to - Chef Dennis.  Had we planned a bit better he couldn've joined us after his class.  But, alas, that wasn't to be.  MaGerks was wonderful.  We shared a pretzel with crab dip, two kinds of Philly cheesesteak sandwiches and fried pickles.  We were both exhausted after a VERY long day.

Thursday it was time to visit the Brandywine Battlefield right down the street from the hotel.  Then, we were off to Winterthur.  Finally, the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall.  By the time we got all of that done we were in no mood to hunt for a restaurant for dinner and decided to eat at the Brandywine Prime located a hop, skip and a jump from the hotel.  Good choice on our part!

Here are a few scenes from the day:

This is the excavation of what was George Washington's home in Philadelphia.

This is the rim of the Liberty Bell.  Keep in mind that the bell wasn't intended to be seen, just heard.
The Declaration of Independence was signed here.

 On to Winterthur.  Our 25 minute ride to the main house through the gardens took more like 45 minutes.  Even though there weren't a lot of flowers blooming, it was gorgeous.

 Our garden guide.  What a hoot.  He retired and was home for a few days and his wife "suggested" he get a job. LOL.

The dining room.  The tankards below were made by Paul Revere.  Mr. DuPont rarely mixed any styles.  But, oh my gosh, did he ever have the collection of Americana!!

This is a knife rack.  Amazing.
This wallpaper was incredibly old.  When Mr. DuPont found it, it was too tall for the room.  So, instead of cutting off the wallpaper, he added to the height of the room.
 Part of the conservatory.  You saw the outside of this in the first photo.
This spiral staircase was rescued from a plantation home that was going to be demolished.
 The bar.  Needless to say, mine is not quite as fancy!
A cooler.  I know, can you imagine hefting that into the trunk to take to the college football game... 
See that car WAY DOWN AT THE END OF THE LOT?  That's how you avoid door dings.  It's called a Connie spot.

Friday morning we went to Longwood Gardens.  More on that later.  Friday afternoon we drove to Columbus and had more grandkid time - YAY!  Saturday morning it was time to drive home.  By the time we finally got home to Indianapolis, we were pretty hungry.  Being the frugal person that I am, I had some leftovers.  The eggs that we didn't use on Cape had been hardboiled and put in the cooler.  We had extra lettuce and celery.  And, most of my steak and green beans from Brandywine Prime had been packed in ice too.  It felt like the makings of a steak salad nicoise.  We even had leftover truffled french fries.  The only "newbies" were the mushrooms and the capers and the dressing. 


Lizzy said...

I wish my leftovers morphed into such delicious dishes! I'm so glad you mixed in some fun on this trip...I love all the photos. And Connie and Bill have a lot in common when it comes to parking :)

Have a great week! xo

The Café Sucré Farine said...

lovely photos!