if you are from philly... or if you visit philly... please promise me something.
promise me you will take the green line trolley to west philadelphia (born and raised) at least once. if only for fun.
the trolley is the most ridiculous, yet most amusing, mode of public transportation this city has to offer. imagine the public transportation authority sitting around a long board room table and having this discussion:
"hey guys, let's do something new. something fun between center city and west philly, just for kicks!"
"but Paul, i don't... think we need to do anything new. i mean, we have the subway. and buses run east to west all the time. do we need--"
"Nooo you're not listening! let's do something FUN. not to fulfill any PURPOSE, but just to DO it, 'ya know?"
"well, like you said, we have the subway. and we have buses. what if we combined the two?!?"
"that would be called a train"
"NOT if we put it in the air!"
"that would be a monorail. they always crash. many people have died."
"what if we put it underground?!??! that's it! nothing can crash underground!"
"no -- Paul, you're still thinking of a subway. we already have a subway."
[several moments of silence. all present are afraid to offend Paul.]
"i got it! what if we just make a street underground. and drive a bus down it? so it's still a bus... but it's even farther down underground than the subway? and it can come up for air sometimes!"
and that's exactly what they did. probably just to humor Paul.
it's a bus. smaller than a school bus, but not quite a short bus. two doors, one driver. bus seating. underground. comes up for air at some stops. goes back down. drives under the river.
that, my dear friends, is the green line trolley. absolutely redundant, but a very fun ride. it goes up and down imaginary coal mine hills, it feels like a rollercoaster speeding out of control, and then POOF you're at a subterranean bus stop. when it stops, i half expect to see some Fraggles hop on, as it is their neighborhood bus.
i have been taking the magic school bus from PENN back into the city. every single day i get off the bus feeling very dizzy (my body doesn't know if it's above or below ground) but amused. i suggest you try it.