The Kensington neighbourhood might be one of the rougher places in Philadelphia – the City of Brotherly Love.
Allegheny Station of the subway system is not particularly accessible. The trains are running elevated at the level of the third and fourth story of the adjacent houses. The station exit is not fitted with an elevator – just long concrete stairs down to street level, moist and slippery from the melting snow mixed with the grime of an administrative district with low-priority for proper maintenance.
How much nicer and more navigable were the walkways and stairs around the Capitol yesterday, meticulously groomed with extra maintenance personnel on standby to pick up the accidental piece of litter falling from an unsuspecting visitor’s pocket.
But I witnessed on more than one occasion at Allegheny Station how a stranger has offered a mother with stroller and walking children, and bags full of stuff to help lift that stroller down. It was amazing to see the distressed face of the woman trying to coordinate too many incompatible demands change into a smile of experienced solidarity.
Brotherly and sisterly love at work, more than three hundred years after William Penn coined the name of the city.