Haven't you ever just wanted to goto the airport, jump on a plane and go somewhere? Anywhere? Do something you have always wanted to? And sometimes fret, you may never get to? Well, I did this with my father and brother this past Monday.
All do credit needs to goto my father and brother on this one, but I was fortunate to tag along. And well, I'd like to share the story.
My Dad has said numerous times he has wanted to go here and there and well, he hasn't done it for one reason or another. Life does get in the way, you know. Unexpected bills, job changes, kids, and so much more tend to creep in on those best laid plans.
So my brother called me up on the phone and said, "I want to take Dad to Philadelphia for a cheese steak for Father's Day, you in?"
I replied, "What date?" He said, "Monday, the 21st." "I'm in."
So, Monday morning, I woke up 4:30 to get ready. I got myself to my parents at 6:00am. Plane leaves at 7:05 and we're a half hour away from the airport. Time to go. My Dad was brushing his teeth, getting a bag of stuff, like coffee, water, snacks.
My brother is like, "We got to go. You can't take that bag where we are going?"
Dad is like, "What?" (We didn't tell him anything. My family likes surprises.)
Tim says, "We got to go. We have a schedule. Got your photo id?"
My father says, "Yes, but I don't like being rushed."
Off we go. We get to the airport and my Dad's like, "Are you serious?"
"Yup. Here's your ticket."
"We're going to Philidelphia? I see a Philly cheese steak in my future."
Tim and I smile and we get to the check point. It's like 6:45 now and we all get pulled aside for extra screening. No big deal, but um, we are cutting it a little close. My dad goes to sit down to put his shoes back on and we hear over the intercom: "Berube, party of 3, you're plane is boarded. Berube, Party of 3"
So, now I am sprinting to the gate and my Dad is still tying his shoes. "We're here. They are right behind me." I proclaim.
We were the LAST 3 to board so we all got to sit in the middle seat with strangers. Good times. The ride was only an hour, no big deal. We end up in Philidelphia around 8:30 or so.
Here we are in the airport and my Dad's like, "A McDonald's. Want to get breakfast?" We say sure and off we go. People who know my Dad knows he likes, no strike that, he loves food. And he is a BIG DOLLAR MENU FAN. So, our first meal in Philadelphia was McDonalds.
Then off to the train. Took about a 1/2 hour and we get into town. After negotiating a mall which seemed like an endless maze, we make it outside onto Market Street.
A guy on the road looks at me and says, "You see the Liberty Bell?" I reply, "Nope." The stranger says, "Straight ahead!" I am guessing with my back pack, Boston hat and full beard, I was screaming tourist. So, we get to the visitor's center and first up is the duck tour, I mean, 10AM is a little early for cheese steak. The duck tour was okay. More entertainment then history but still fun. We got little quackers. I don't think they realized what they were getting into giving my Dad a quaker. I mean, he might be 59 1/2 but he definitely has an inner child (which my brother and I boast often). We get on the boat and sits behind us and the endless, "Quack, Quack, Quack" starts with my Dad saying, "I can be pretty annoying" with a laugh, we just laugh at each other as this is HIS day and he's having a blast. There was a quiz time on the tour and the guy was like, "If we get hit by a cannon, then we would be ______" My Dad yells sitting ducks!! and the driver says, "We'll be on the bottom of the Delaware." My Dad says again, a little louder "We'd still be SITTING DUCKS!" A quote I will never forget.
An hour or so later we get back to the center and it's time to get down to business, go eat a Philly cheese steak. We goto Geno's first. I felt it was like having a steakum and wasn't too impressed. Dad and Tim were more forgiving. I got a steak with provolone and onions. The other two got the same but with American. Right across the street was Pats. Time for round two.
Now, this was a cheese steak I was looking for. The steak was juicy (Greasy) and I got it with cheese Whiz and Onions. Added some salt and ketchup. Heaven. Dad and Tim got the same. Then my Dad added Hots! "It's not hot" he says, biting into it. All of a sudden he takes the peppers out and challenges us. Um, if my Dad takes them out, then there is no way on God's green earth I am going to bite. We met some guys from Louisville Kentucky who just came down from Bike week in Laconia.
Two steaks down. Tim's like let's go to Jim's next. My Dad's like, "Serious?" Off to Jim's it is. It's really hot out and we walked about two miles to get there and are starting our trek back. My Dad's like, "They should have a bike to rent? Or a Vespa? How about a Segway?" We laugh and keep trucking along. We come upon a bar called the Wooly Mammoth and have a beer. Then off to Jim's This steak and cheese for me was the best. Tim and Dad still claim Pat's as the victor!!
We go back and see some tourist attractions like Independence hall, the liberty bell, have some ice cream/root beer floats and believe it or not, its time to go home.
I cannot begin to tell you how many laughs we had. We laughed at each other, we laughed with each other. We stopped and had dinner in the airport. Tim and I had this really excellent crabfry bisque and my Dad had crab legs. Absolutely excellent.
Dad bought us T-shirts which we will no doubt have for years to come to remind us fondly of our trip. These will spark so many great memories of our trip!!
On the way back on the plane my Dad was like, "Next Year, Chicago?" We'll see.
As we left him at home, and walking out the door, Dad says, "I think I saw a sub in the fridge."
I love you Dad. Happy Father's Day.
Great Idea Tim. So, I highly encourage you if your contemplating that trip... just take it!