Philadelphia: Friendship and Photography

Alternative name for this blog post: The Gentleman from Philadelphia Part 2.

After having such a nice time with Eduardo when he came to DC to meet me, I thought it would be fun to go visit him for a weekend in Philadelphia.

I always need to go on Instagram photography missions and there is nothing better than having a local to show you around, plus, of course, it would be great to hang out with Eduardo again.

I proposed the idea and he was down to play host in his city.

When the day of my trip arrived, packing right before heading out to take the train, I messaged him to check if he had a hairdryer. His response?

"No, but the hotel has one. Yes, I got us a hotel room downtown... Hope you don't mind."

Oh boy.

After my recent experience with a Third Type, I did not want to get myself into any ambiguous situations.

Me: "Separate beds?"
Eduardo: "Could not get two beds."

Oh boy.

I didn't want to be rude or ungrateful to Eduardo or make assumptions about his intentions but I definitely wanted to not leave room for confusion about my own intentions, as I've just completely lost interest in being intimate outside of a relationship.

What do you say in these awkward situations?  I had to think fast for this one so I didn't miss my train!

Me: "Okay, do I need to clarify expections?"
Eduardo: "I don't have any expectations."

Given that Eduardo is a gentleman, I felt 100% confident he was being sincere.

Once in Philadelphia, when my uber from the train station pulled up to the hotel, my jaw dropped. I was so excited to stay somewhere so fancy!!! I felt so lucky!!

First stop: Dinner at midnight.

Then, out and about in the town:

The following morning, the plan was to have brunch at a lovely restaurant with an outdoor patio.

What I like about Eduardo is that he is a man with a plan. There was not one moment during the whole weekend when we didn't know what to do or where to go or where to eat. There was no walking in circles trying to decide which restaurant to eat at as if our lives depended on it (as happens whenever I am with my parents). It was so relaxing!!

Also, doesn't he look like a movie star?

The food was AMAZING:

After a delicious meal, it was time for some sightseeing and photography.

I was obsessed with the City Hall building.

As part of his tour, Eduardo took me to one of the most beautiful restaurants I have ever seen - XIX at the top of the Bellevue Hotel.

There really is nothing better than visiting a city with a local tour guide who knows all the best places.

We were pretty tired from walking around, so it was back to the hotel for a nap before heading out for our evening plan.

Sleeping arrangements for the weekend, each on our own side of the giant king size bed:

(The blue dots are not on purpose. I need a new phone.)

Next stop: Eduardo took me to the symphony.

Then, a delicious dinner at a little restaurant called Russet. OMG this snapper was amazing.

Eduardo is very good at sharing desserts. The best part of sharing a dessert? Less calories.

This photo is a really nice representation of how much we were enjoying each other's company:

The next day, yet again, Eduardo took me to another fantastic restaurant for brunch where I savored every single bite. Why can I never find food this good in DC?

I hear that avocado toast is all the rage nowadays and now I know why. OMG. Yum.

After brunch, Eduardo had to watch a Very Important soccer game between Madrid and Barcelona with his friends and it was Very Important for Madrid to NOT win.

(Whatever all that means)

Therefore, I continued my photography mission on my own. 

Instagramers are always posting photos of beautiful European libraries so I tried to see what I could capture at The Free Library.

Stopping there was a good reminder of how important libraries are to our communities. Every single computer had a person sitting at it.

Next stop was the Philadelphia Museum of Art where I was in for a very pleasant surprise because that museum was SO good.

I am 100% sure I would have absolutely swiped right on this guy. Hotttttt

Though I searched the museum for my favorite kind of art (small 18th century French landscapes), I couldn't find anything in that genre. I did however, find FOUR paintings by one of my favorite artists named Henri Fantin-Latour in the very last room I visited. That was exciting!

I really like this selfie I took on the front steps of the museum after my visit. PS. I love my new sunglasses!

I trepidatiously headed back to the meet Eduardo and his friends Alvar and Oriol. All three of them are from Barcelona, so if Madrid won it would have been Bad. Luckily for all of us, they tied. 

When I joined them at the bar, what did I walk into? Men commiserating about the Not Win all amped-up on their testosterone? 

No. Not even. 

I walked in to three men having a heart to heart about their relationships and their FEELINGS. 

You know how people say men don't know how to communicate? Or talk about their feelings? Um, 100% not true. They absolutely do. They just need to feel that they are in a safe space to do so. This was right up my alley so I pulled up a bar stool and gave them some empathy and sympathy for their frustrations. Guess who was a big hit?

Later, when I told my dad about this, his response was, "Jennifer, I talk about my feelings ALL THE TIME!"

Yay to guys not being afraid to talk about their feelings!

After another wonderful meal and before I had to head to catch my train, Eduardo and I went for dessert at an outdoor cafe, overlooking beautiful Rittenhouse Square.

Three desserts for two people? Why not?

It was such a nice weekend!

What was my favorite part? The food? The restaurants? The architecture? Art? Talking with three men about their feelings? Being with a man with a plan? Being with someone I feel like I have never not known? 

All of the above!

But, I think if I have to choose a favorite, it was sharing a bed with a man I had just met and having him stay on his own side. I just thought it was so adorable that I had only seen Eduardo twice before and the third time I was seeing him, we were going to be sharing a king size bed in a hotel room.

After three years of crossing paths with countless First Types who were totally uninterested in knowing me (boy did they miss out), it was so amazing and gratifying to spend a weekend with a man who enjoyed me as a human and enjoyed my company as a friend

From all the way on the other side of that king size bed, Eduardo provided me with more comfort than he can possibly know.

The only problem with Eduardo is that if you are walking down the street with him and you are in a hurry, you can plan on being late. He has to stop and chat with at least one person per block. He knows everyone!!

OMG Eduardo, thank you for your wonderful hospitality and for the seemingly lifelong friendship I have enjoyed with you on the only five days in actuality that I have been in your presence.

You are just wonderful. And, after walking down quite a few streets with you, I learned that apparently most of Philadelphia knows that too!

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  1. a nice write up of a weekend. the photos were amazing. It is good to know what could get a check mark for a successful date (activities, planning) vs unsuccessful (vagueness, improvising) as always a good write up. Im glad you had a good weekend

  2. Again... HELLO from Xiamen, China!!! My Man, Eduardo!!! A great Fraternity brother at Ohio Wesleyan University. I was 18 when I met him. He was a Senior. I learned so much about being a "Guy" from him, Jon P., Gino S., and Mark H. at Delta Tau Delta- Mu Chapter. He had the best looking and smartest Girlfriend at school ( not in the Fraternity house... at SCHOOL!!). Carolyn was her name if I remember. Do you know why she was stunning to all who saw her (and as you knw Eduardo is a dapper dude too)? She was undeniably attractive; jaw dropping actually. When she opened her mouth her intelligence was even more beautiful. I am sure Ed liked what he saw, but loved, even more what he heard. I am so glad you are getting to know my dear friend. Bruce B.- Xiamen, China

    1. Thanks Bruce! I am glad you have such lovely memories of Eduardo and yes, he is very dapper!


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