Friday, August 24, 2012

The Liberty Bell and the Chinese


A short family vacation found us in the City of Brotherly Love and in 1 super strong day, we were able to see Independence Hall and the room where the Declaration was signed, the Liberty Bell (which has a great exhibit telling the story of how the world views and appreciates its symbolism), and the US Mint, where they make over 30 million coins per day (if they want to).

The NFO and I have certainly put our kids on the path to being full fledged history buffs and I think they really do get the sense of history from the places we visit, so in that respect, a total victory.

I hadn’t been to this part of Philadelphia in maybe 30 years or so and I thought it was really well done. The tour guide in the Hall probably could have benefitted from a microphone, but it was time appropriate and very informative.

One thing I’ve noticed about family vacations these days is just how difficult it is to truly “check out.” Emails come in (and even though I have my auto-responder on), I still feel the urge to check/respond. I mean, either I do it in a multi-task way or I pay for it when I “get back,” right?

One moment of irony that I know my friend, Dave Sloan, a Philly native no less, will appreciate.

There was a HUGE group of Chinese teenagers on a tour (I impressed them because when they told me where they were from, they said “North east part of China,” and I said, “Oh, near Harbin?” but I digress Smile)

I guess I was just aware of the fact that here were all of these Chinese students, visiting the cradle of American (heck, world) Democracy and many of the values that are core to the experience are either forbidden or foreign (for now), in their homeland.

Wonder how rising wealth in China and international travel will play out in the years to come.

All in all, a great day. One in which we truly “left it all on the field,” and (we hope) were able to continue to instill our kids a sense of curiosity.

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