After nearly three years of not being in the US, I am approaching the country as if it were somehow new to me. I am rediscovering carpeting, on all the floors and stairs. The building are very high. I am marveling at them flashing bright lights against the sky in downtown Philadelphia. I get excited to hear regional accents. "Water" has a special pronunciation in these parts. The "a" sounds like a sort of "er". There's a better cocktail menu at the bar. I ordered a Sidecar this evening as my aperitivo. The taxi driver strikes up a conversation as he takes me from the train station to my hotel. Coffee is "long" and watery. Donuts and muffins are the prefered breakfast choice. Professionals are young and wearing baggy trousers. Nobody's smoking.
It's time to close my black-out curtains and curl up in bed. The light will be seeping under and around those curtains early tomorrow morning, something that is impossible with Italian windows.