The Gardens aren’t really my taste, aesthetically. But they embody everything I love about Philadelphia: weird, beautiful, shambling, thriving, and jumbled-together, all at once. Philly is Ben Franklin as much as it’s Rocky. It’s grand monuments built by nineteenth-century industrialists next to hodgepodge neighborhoods. It’s a place where the Italian Market is half Mexican and you can find pretty much anything served on a hoagie. I love it here.
But my city is also filthy.