Having recently heard that Carnegie Mellon is moving forward with the expansion of their campus – a good move that supports the incredible innovation happening at my alma mater, I noticed that the master plan swallows the apartment I lived in during my senior year and the land is slated to be home to one of these new buildings. It’s ok. It was a terribly crappy building, though there was a neat vintage clothing store downstairs and I was told that Andy Warhol lived there too when he was, briefly, a student at CMU (and that, in itself, was enough reason for me to endure the dire living conditions).

But hearing this news got me thinking about places I’ve called home (something I think about fairly often, actually), and how one day some of those places just won’t exist anymore.

So, in honor of the first of the places I’ve called home to be eliminated from existence, I decided to travel back to each of these places in the fastest, most economically way possible – via Google Maps – and document them for prosperity.

It is unlikely that one day I will be able to bring my children to go see each of the places in person that I’ve lived in during my life, but I can at least show them what they looked like–according to Google Maps, anyway.

Looking at each of these places brings back a lot of memories and stories for each one, so one day, I hope to be able to use this image to share some of those stories with my kids… or anyone who asks!


I’ve been writing travel articles for Examiner.com for the past month and have loved having an outlet for sharing my travel stories and recommendations. My latest article was published this week on Philadelphia – here. Having spent nearly every weekend in Philadelphia for two years while my husband did postdoctoral research, we had a tons of opportunities to try out the great restaurants the city has to offer and found Philly to be a really special place.

Though we are both New Yorkers at heart, we loved the accessibility of the city, walk-ability, the historic charm, the liveliness, lack of pretentiousness, and most of all – the great food. It is a place we can both see ourselves settling one day. If we were to ever do such a thing.

So for now, we try to visit once a year to see friends, reminiscent about those two adventurous years, and venture into some of our favorite places. In my Examiner article I only mentioned a few, but there are several other places we still salivate over and make us miss city living even more. Here are a few I must share:

  • Distrito – simply amazing Garces-owned Mexican with incredibly fun decor.
  • Amada – it was the first restaurant we ever went to in Philly and you always remember your first. Plus, their delicious spinach and fig salad wrapped in serrano ham dish doesn’t hurt. Another Garces creation.
  • Ok, I really like Garces, but it is so much to like! So for that reason, I am also going to include Tinto (tapas) and Whiskey Village (burger, duck fat fries) on the list while where on it.
  • Vic Sushi Bar – Our favorite sushi place. I even said so on Quora.
  • Zento Contemporary Sushi – newly expanded, delicious rolls.
  • La Viola – Good, inexpensive Italian in cozy (read: very tiny) space and you’ll probably have to wait awhile for a table. Cash only, which seems to be pretty popular in Philly.
  • Audrey Claire – another cozy one but with a constantly changing menu and really great food.
  • Zahav – An Israeli restaurant in a surprisingly serene city amongst the bustling Old City
  • Butcher & Singer – for when you feel like you want to be on the set of Mad Men, and want a good Side car and a steak while you’re at it.
  • Lolita – another Mexican food favorite, with fun guacamoles and great margaritas