A few tastes of home while far away
WINNIPEG, Manitoba – It is an article of faith that once you've lived in Philadelphia for a while, no matter where you travel you will find someone or something with ties to the place.
That happened to me three times on Wednesday.
The first came as I was walking down Portage Avenue from the mall near my hotel to the MTS Centre, home of the NHL's Jets. If you follow me on Twitter you know I'm a pretty big hockey fan, and the rabid support the Jets enjoy is second to none. I happen to be a particular fan of the old Jets logo, and I wanted to see if the team store had any good throwback gear.
Before I got there (and eventually left empty-handed), this happened:
After I posted that tweet, I heard from a Twitter follower and a newsroom colleague who both knew the people I met. The world is indeed small.
Later in the day, I headed over to the lovely Winnipeg Railway Museum at Union Station. It's full of historic old train cars, both from freight and passenger lines. The museum is built on tracks that used to be part of the station, and from the moment you walk up the stairs, you can tell you're in a place with some soul. It even has the right kind of musty, old-wood smell.
Among the signature displays in the museum is a 143-year-old steam locomotive called the Countess of Dufferin that was built at Philadelphia's legendary Baldwin Locomotive Works. To get to Winnipeg, the Countess was transported from North Broad Street to Minnesota over ground, then up the Red River on a barge. After she arrived, she became the first locomotive to operate on the Canadian Prairies.
If you're reading this in Winnipeg and you're looking for something to do on Thursday or early Friday, give the museum a look. It's open from 10 to 5 p.m., and admission is just $5.
Come nightfall, I encountered a few visitors from Reading at my hotel. Technically, as Philadelphians are rightly quick to point out, Berks County is beyond the city's true suburbs. But in a week when the Union played its annual scrimmage against Reading United - and when ground zero for American soccer is some 1,500 miles from the country's birthplace - I'll let it slide this time.
To see more photos and a few videos from the museum, follow me on Snapchat at jtannenwald. I posted lots of good stuff there.
The journal is probably going on hiatus for the next few days, because I have some big stories to work on heading into the U.S.-Sweden game. If any Winnipeggers are reading this, I promise it's not because I've run out of things in your city to write about. There's just too much else going on within the World Cup sphere at the moment.