Day 23 Part 2: Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania Turnpike

After learning a great deal about the history of Heinz, we went on into the downtown area. It had so many, many bridges and parking was challenging. We didn’t even have a specific place in mind – we just wanted to park somewhere in the downtown area and get out and have a look around, and it took us 20 minutes to find the most expensive parking we’ve encountered yet. That is a bit of a problem with the way our route has gone. We started somewhere relatively cheap and have been going into increasingly expensive areas. Fuel managed to peak as well, finally hitting the 3 dollar mark.

U.S. Steel Tower

U.S. Steel Tower

The parking we finally did find was only available for an hour, so it didn’t give us long, but we were able to order some kielbasa from a street vendor. It was very good and gave us the chance to chat with him and a beautician who was also getting lunch. She said she loved living there and it was a good place for families, but that even though it rarely rained, it did have as many overcast days a year as Washington State (which has some fairly English weather on average).

We decided to go on in a major way. We were planning on staying with a friend of mine in a suburb of Philly and she was going to busy the next night, so we decided to go our furthest distance in one day yet and cross all of PA in a single day. It took us till just past 8 PM, but we made it all the way across the Pennsylvania Turnpike, a pay road which is more like British motorways than anything else I’ve encountered here so far. British motorways are enclosed systems from the point of view that the only points to get off for things like food and toilets are stops that feel fairly infrequent compared to going on other kinds of roads were you pass near little towns with fuel and loos and what not quite frequently. Although British motorways aren’t toll roads, they have embraced that enclosed system too. It meant that in the same way that your average UK stop on the motorway has the same things within a region, perhaps an M&S, a Burger King, a Costa and a WHSmith, but not if it had a Waitrose and a McDonalds the one across Pennsylvania had almost the same makeup at each stop: Popeye’s, Starbucks and Sunoco. They seem to come as package deals.

It was a very challenging drive, because, unlike the Midwest, it was far from flat. It wound through the Appalachians, so full attention was required for all of the long drive from Pittsburgh to the Philadelphia area.

We finally reached my friend’s house in Media a bit after 8. We have now done about 4500 miles and plan to spend the next few days resting and exploring the North East.

Here’s the video:

2 thoughts on “Day 23 Part 2: Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania Turnpike

  1. Anne Marie

    I say you settle somewhere near Media – that way you, me, Val and Jessica can reunite and go to as may Hanson concerts possible 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *