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Ephemera From the Archives Photo Essay Travels

Philadelphia, revisited

Philadelphia is one of those cities that doesn’t seem to get much respect, especially from New Yorkers. To be honest, I’m not sure why. I had the pleasure of spending a week there on business in 2017 and found Philly to be a beautiful, vibrant, and interesting city, with lots to see and do.

Of course, given the time available, I only saw a small part of the city. Both my hotel and my customer’s offices were downtown, within 3km of each other, albeit on opposite sides of City Hall.

This kept me in the heart of the business and tourist areas, to be sure.

There is so much history here; Philadelphia (founded 1682) is after all the birthplace of America as we have come to understand it: the Founding Fathers drafted the Constitution and ratified it here. Suffice it to say, Philly is old. But it’s also new, and these age differences can create stark contrasts. Philly is also a city of neighbourhoods, each with a distinct look and feel.

Like many older North American cities, the downtown core isn’t just for business, tourists, hospitals, and university students. People actually live downtown, adding a whole new level of vibrance and life to the city.

You can see the life early in the morning before work, or after the business day is done. Then again, I was in an office all day during business hours when I was there… who knows what’s happening on randum Tuesday afternoons in Philly?

Another standout is the outstanding Second Empire-styled City Hall. It sits smack-dab in the middle of everything and there are clear sight lines to it from all over the city. Early (and late) in the day, it gets spectacularly lit up by reflections from the surrounding modern glass office towers.

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Ephemera Travels

A fine mid-century morning

The NOIA Building in downtown Palm Springs looks like the kind of place Don Draper would have worked in, had he not been a New Yorker.

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Ephemera Travels

Take a Bow

Downtown Calgary is chock-full of midrise and highrise towers of varying styles, vintages, and aesthetic charm.

The Bow is one of those iconic structures that is just different from everything else around it. It’s taller, it’s oddly shaped, it catches light, it’s not a glass obelisk, and it has a cool sculpture at its base (Wonderland by Jaume Plensa). What more can a travelling geek with a camera ask for?

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Ephemera

The apartment building

Apartment living isn’t for everyone, but every city has its share of apartment buildings.

Ottawa is no exception. Although there are more and more shiny new high-rise condos and apartment building popping up, Ottawa’s apartment scene is dominated by older buildings with a certain sense of charm (or total lack thereof).

I’ve decided to take it upon myself to start documenting the vintage Ottawa apartment building, no matter how large or small, charming or charmless, in any neighbourhood around town. This post is the first in a series of who-knows-how-many.

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Architecture Ephemera

Deep Blue

Architecture and the ionosphere. That combination worked for me yesterday.

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