We spent last weekend in Philadelphia.
While it wasn’t without its stressful moments with our boys, it was an enjoyable time away in a city that’s become one of our favorite weekend getaways.
The following are some takeaways from the weekend.
•What brought us to Philly was a Maroon 5 concert on Friday night.
With the band not taking the stage until 9 p.m., we knew it would be a challenge for Carson. An early riser, Carson is never up past 9 at night. We realized the night could have some challenges, but we didn’t want him to miss out. We were hopeful he would nap in the car after school, but it didn’t happen.
We were able to get into our hotel room and have dinner before jumping on the subway to the concert venue. The boys seemed to enjoy their first subway ride, saying little and taking in the sights and sounds and learning some new words from nearby inebriated adults.
Five songs in, Carson was fast asleep. We were fine with it and assumed it would happen, thanks to his sound reducing headphones.
By the time the concert was over, Carson had been asleep for over an hour. We let the arena empty out as we woke him up. Since he was groggy, I ended up carrying him out of the venue. Fortunately for me and my back, he woke up and was able to walk to the subway station nearby.
The subway ride back to the hotel was an interesting one. Since it was standing room only, Beckett and Carson squeezed into a seat that left them both uncomfortable. The cool thing about the ride back was the assembled group jammed into the subway car sang several Maroon 5 songs we had just heard.
That’s when Carson reached for his headphones again but fortunately he stayed awake until we got to our hotel room.
•Beckett has reached the age he doesn’t want to act like anything is a big deal.
When we entered the 20,000-seat arena for the first time, his face showed how he overwhelmed he was by the crowd size. When I asked if he was okay, he played it off like it was no big deal. As we were walking down the steps to our seats, I heard him say to himself he had never seen so many people.
Once we found our seats, we chatted about how many people were around us. I told him one of the things I love about concerts is they attract all types. There were kids his age there as well as adults his parents’ age as well as senior citizens. As I thought I was making a good point about how music can bring all these various different types of people together, I realized he wasn’t listening. He had already turned around and was chatting with a couple who were from nearby West Chester, which was where he was born. He then went about telling them his adoption story, which is always interesting for us to hear him tell. He certainly takes some liberties here and there, but he’s on the money for the most part.
•Homeless people make Beckett uncomfortable for two reasons.
First, they scare him. This is particularly the case with those who are vocal about their need for money. He doesn’t like that. He feels sorry for them, but he’s also worried they are going to grab him and hold him hostage.
Secondly, he doesn’t understand how living on the street becomes an option. He questions where the homeless people’s relatives and friends are and how they could let them live on the streets.
It was a running conversation throughout the weekend. Although it was unnerving for him to encounter these folks routinely, I think it’s good for him to learn about the different segments of society.
•After utilizing it several times during the weekend, Beckett has now decided he wants to be an Uber driver when he grows up. He thinks he will need to pack some heat to be safe.
We walked a lot over the weekend, but there were points when we needed to catch a ride. For instance, when we wanted to go to the Franklin Institute (a must for any Philadelphia trip in my opinion), we opted for an Uber because it was most convenient.
I showed Beckett the app and how it worked. Being a tech junky, he was all about it. He loved how I could pick the different styles of the Uber vehicle and then watch it as it meandered toward us on nearby roads. Because he’s really into cars, I splurged on the premium ride, which turned out to be a Cadillac Escalade. That poor driver fielded dozens of questions over the few miles of driving.
On the way back, he wanted to do an “express pool” ride where you can save money and share your vehicle with others. We put a quick no on that, which was fine for him so long as he got to pick the vehicle. He picked a Ford Expedition that time.
Later when we asked the kids what was the most fun, Carson said the Franklin Institute and Beckett said it was “Ubering” around town.
Silly me, I thought it was the concert.