The parents come to visit

My parents will soon make their first trip to the city of Philadelphia to visit us in our new home.

I can’t say enough how crucial of a weekend this will be.

You see, neither of my parents are “big-city” people; although, to give my dad a little more credit, he was born in New York City. He enjoys visiting New York from time to time, but if he is going to fight the traffic and the people, it all better be for a good reason.

My mom, on the other hand, would be perfectly happy if she never stepped foot in a big city for the rest of her life. She’s just a small-town girl, living in a lonely world.

The wisdom of Journey aside, getting my parents to visit Philadelphia is a big step. After all, Philadelphia doesn’t exactly have the best of reputations among suburban Pennsylvania residents.

But I’m finding that Philadelphia gets a bad rap in many ways.

I was one of those naysayers not too long ago. My idea of Philadelphia was a run-down city full of gangs and crime.

Sure, it has that. But guess what? Every big city has that. And just like every other big city, there’s so much more to offer than just crime and gangs.

There’s art. Quaint cafes and bistros. Beautiful parks with long stretches of walking and bike paths. Museums, monuments and zoos. The list goes on and on.

So it’s important that I show my parents that side of Philadelphia during their visit. I don’t need to prove that it’s a great place to live, rather I just need to prove it’s an adequate place to visit every so often.

A more important point during all of this, I suppose, is why I so greatly seek their approval at 28 years old.

I’m not sure if there’s a great answer to that, but I do think that most children (even adult children) seek their parents’ approval throughout the majority of life. For me, it’s a matter of respect. I respect my parents greatly, how they raised me and how they live; in that token I to strive to ensure they respect (maybe even approve) of the choices I’m making as an adult.

Maybe that fades with age and maybe it doesn’t. Maybe I’m the type of person who seeks the approval of others a little too much – probably to a fault.

If so, I think there are worse faults to have.

Besides dear reader, you like me, right? If you’ve read this far, I must have at least gained your literary approval, or at least peaked your interest.

I suppose I can live with that. But feel free to let me know how I can improve your reading experience for next time.

Beardsley, a native of Loyalsock Township, is a former Sun-Gazette reporter. He may be contacted at