I had just checked into the Sheraton Philadelphia University City Hotel at 36th and Chestnut Street on a Thursday evening (US East Coast time).
After Yaoxiang, a senior from University of Pennsylvania, the organisers of DiaS'pura 2, which I am here in Philly for, picked me up from JFK airport and we drove a good 3 hours in the rain to get to the hotel.
The lady at the reception referred to him as my son (!!!) when he offered his credit card for the room's incidentals and suddenly, I felt very old. Maybe I should spike up my hair next time and dye it purple.
I wanted to ride the bike out but it was raining and fairly late so I just walked to look for dinner. I ended up having a Baracoa bowl from Chiplote.
Part of my travel ritual is always a trip to the convenience store to pick up a few bottles of water and iced tea for the room. So into the 7-Eleven I went.
I spotted a big bookstore nearby (this is the university district of Philly after all) on the way to dinner and made a mental note to visit it.
In the middle of the night, still up at 3am because I am not used to the 12-hour time difference, I dashed acrossed the street in 6°C temperatures to a Wawa's to get a hot hoagie. It tasted good but man, was it messy to eat. I felt like a housewife cleaning up my table after I finished supper.
It is funny how much of a neat freak I become when I travel. I always arrange my toiletries nicely in the bathroom, wiping up and stray water on the sink, and place my bags, clothes and computer gear neatly in the room. Maybe it is my way of making the hotel room a little more like home.