Jill Betters takes a bike ride up Belgrade

Jill Betters
Favorite Spot: Biking up Belgrade Street
Neighborhood: Fishtown

I am: An adopted Philadelphian in love with the Riverwards. After two years spent primarily making nonsense in Fishtown Neighbors Association, I’m drinking a beer trying to figure out what to do next.
Years in Philly: About 10 in Philly and the burbs
Current Home: Fishtown


(Please note that the photos don’t accurately reflect the love letter. More will be taken in the summer, and the piece will be re-posted)

My love note:

It’s late evening. You depart company with your friends, strap on your helmet. Frankford and Girard are too busy, so you take Belgrade north. After the first push of the pedals, the air starts to move quickly to cool you. It’s so temperate you can’t figure out what time of year it is.

The humidity makes the street sparkle, orange pools from the sodium vapor lights. Or did it rain? You weave around the construction, passing slowly while the bike takes an extra bump-bump-bump. Its street has been ripped up going on forever, but you don’t mind. You are headed home, away from the nightlife that has changed the corridors in Fishtown, back into the depths of the riverwards to lay your head.

There isn’t any traffic, but you are still cautious when you Idaho through the stop signs. Approaching the cemetery the air changes. It’s sweet, like bark and grass gone to seed. Funny, but you dont remember that facade looking so modern. Things change hastily around here.

Your momentum creates a quiet whish, uninterrupted by headlights. No need to change gears, it’s just you and the soft ticking of your freewheel as you coast. Left foot all the way down, you lean back to look up. City glow means there are no stars, but you can feel them there.

A short bank left then bank right means you have to make a decision soon. You grip the brakes gently, emerging from the darkness of the big oaks to pull past the parked cars and creep into York Street. You pull away, leaving the peace of Belgrade in your wake.

Posted on by Emma Fried-Cassorla in Fishtown / Kensington 3 Comments

3 Responses to Jill Betters takes a bike ride up Belgrade

  1. codergrrl

    Yep, that’s my street. Nice.

  2. 9a72b612-3994-11e2-867e-000bcdcb2996

    I wonder where the next home invasion, mugging, or wheel theft will be in the crime infested Fishtown?

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