0019 The Resurrection of Baltimore (USA 019—revisit, 01-019)
Baltimore Travel Blog› entry 19 of 28 › view all entries
Day 009: 5 hours, 11.3 kms
Today I’ve got a good full day to put myself in Adventure Mode, and I’m going to make sure this day counts. I’m heading south, once again to revisit some familiar places to see what memories might pop up to the surface. I might squeeze in not just one but two “World Class Cities” in one day: Baltimore and WashingtonDC.
I reach downtown Baltimore and continue straight through, determined to find a place where I don’t have to pay for parking. I’ve got a feeling that this is going to be a really fun city to explore.
It’s not long before I reach a cheerful Latino neighbourhood with free parking on the street.
I figure I’ll start out by heading towards the bay. There I find that this area around the bay has also been beautifully resurrected. Once upon a time it looks like this was an area of ugly warehouses and urban decay—now turned into trendy waterside restaurants, shops and apartments. It’s an inspiring sight—seeing what gutted out inner city neighbourhoods can become, if a real effort is made.
I check out a shop which imports expensive artwork from all over the world—then head down to the waterside and follow a jogging path up back toward the main touristy harbour area. There I find a couple of good backdrops for clips—the retired submarine turned into tourist attraction… an enormous old factory building now converted into a shopping/restaurant area.
Then, when I reach Baltimore’s famous touristy harbour district, I get flashbacks of coming here with my wife back in April, 2004. I was about to go to Central Americaand I wanted to do something special for my wife first. So we went to a beautiful fish restaurant overlooking the harbour. My wife grew up on the coast, so she was absolutely thrilled to see such a beautiful sight.
Afterwards we wandered around a bit, and took a tour of an old fashioned sailship run by the Spanish Navy that was docked at the harbour. It was pretty cool to see how they’d sailed across the ocean, classic style.
I remember also bringing my wife and daughter here on another occasion and strolling through the downtown district, stopping at an intriguing little Afghan restaurant and soaking in the odd sights and sounds of Urban America.
I remember really enjoying being able to experience with my family the good, bad and the crazy of this city, and not just limiting ourselves to the tourist strip.
Back to the Present
Now I’m alone, and it’s interesting to feel the memories of past visits in the Real World and my present experience fuse together as on single Baltimoreexperience. It seems that memories for me seem to get organized by location rather than following a chronological sequence.
I head on back south, through Baltimore’s Little Italy which isn’t much more then a couple of Italian eateries… Then on through a neighbourhood that it seems got skipped during the urban renewal project. I pause to chat to a couple of fellows out near a homeless shelter.
“You ought to try busking along the harbour—there’ll be a lot of people out today and you’ll be able to make a lot of money!” one of them suggests.
No, not today. Instead I continue on to explore what looks like a Ukranian/Russian neighbourhood with a beautiful Ukranian church… on to the neighbourhood park and back to my car.
Maybe some other time I’ll come back and explore a few more neighborhoods. But right now I’m itching to get toWashington.