On the morning of my departure, I got the whirlwind tour of downtown and a few more skyline views. It’s a very compact but bustling downtown district in the “triangle” formed by the Ohio, Allegheny, and Monongahela Rivers. A big centerpiece is the much-praised PPG Plaza, which is actually a sterile post-modern nightmare, David cited a reference describing it as as ” a drag queen on acid’s version of a disco in Oz”. Amazingly fitting, I must say…
There was fog and drizzle all around as I left, and Pittsburgh started looking like a more and more viable alternative to SF. But I’ll reserve judgment on that…
On the way in, I experienced that special joy which is the Pennsylvania Turnpike in the rain. I stopped at one of the oldest service plazas on the pike. There was even a historical marker; I was impressed, despite the fact that it was originally a Howard Johnsons Restaurant was not mentioned.
I didn’t realize that it had been nigh onto ten years since Risa and I saw each other. Regular email contact has that effect. But it was good getting back together.
Baltimore is one of my favorite underrated cities in the US. Of course, I’m supposed to stress that I was staying In Westminster, not Baltimore. I awoke to fields and horse-related smells rather than urban blight and decay. But we did go to Baltimore, even though I could have stood to spend more time there.