Ice cream and soap makes everything better!

8 Apr
Capogerios Ice Cream. Photo by Jess B

Capogerios Ice Cream. Photo by Jess B

On Saturday the sun was shining again, and I’m so pleased to report my bad cold / flu had subsided a bit. I’m not coughing or sneezing anywhere near as much and I’m starting to feel much more like myself again. It’s a good job because I was starting to get really p*ss*d off with my body. I’m sorry if I wasn’t happy and upbeat last week, I know hearing about someone else’s misery and down times isn’t particularly helpful, and usually I refrain from posting such. But on the other hand I don’t want to put a gloss over things, ME / CFS sucks and sometimes there’s nothing else to say but to admit that.

I try and be positive and handle everything ME / CFS throws at me with hope and optimism but this past week I have felt really really crappy. And it has really sucked feeling so bad and sometimes sitting in the black hole for a little while is just where you need to be! The black hole is definitely where I’ve been at times in the last week. I’ve been upset and cried more than once , I know I know that tears are not the answer but it’s hard to keep a smile on your face all the time, especially when your body seems to hate you.

What’s so frustrating is that ME / CFS wise I haven’t actually felt that bad. The acute myalgia pain and shattered feeling that I had the first few days we were in Philly hasn’t been there – or perhaps the cold and flu symptoms masked them so I didn’t notice! No, speaking positively and also honestly, I really think that without the damn cold I would have coped pretty well with the transatlantic flight etc. But hey life is what it is and there’s no point dwelling on it now. So onwards and upwards! Enough about my health, onto more exciting topics – like ice cream 🙂

We took full advantage of the sun and the seeming upturn in my health on Saturday and went out for…..nearly an hour and a half!! It’s all about baby steps….  We walked (or in my case was pushed) the few blocks from our rented apartment to 13th Street. This is a really cool street with lots of quirky fun little independent shops and cafes along it.

Photo by Jess B. The Soap Shop.

Photo by Jess B. The Soap Shop.

Our first stop was Duross and Langel, the ‘soap shop’ to me and my family. My sister discovered this place early on in her time in Philly. The shop is stocked full of bars of soap in every flavour and variety imaginable, from ginger to lime and coconut, pomegranate to ocean spray.

Soap! Photo by Jess B.

Soap! Photo by Jess B.

The display and range is huge and it’s great fun smelling (tho that was a little tricky with my cold!) all the varieties whilst trying to decide which to buy. In addition to soap they do candles, creams, lip balms –  the full nine yards of toiletries! I love their body moisturizers and bought Lavender and Egyptian Musk. The lovely owner also threw in a free sample of their latest soap creation – ocean spray, it’s a gorgeous turquoise colour and smells divine, so fresh and clean.

My purchases. Photo by Jess B.

My purchases. Photo by Jess B.

Having used my energy choosing soap and moisturizer at Duross and Langel it was break time and we went to Capogiros, the World’s Best Ice Cream Spot, as voted by National Geographic, which is just a couple of shops down from Duross and Langel on 13th Street.

Capogiro Gelato. Photo by Jess B.

Capogiro Gelato. Photo by Jess B.

To my delight Capogiros had quite a few lactose and gluten free options. It was hard to choose! But I went for one scoop of pineapple and one of mango. It was sooo good! And really soothing for my poor throat that’s still hurting. My Dad had Philly Cheesecake ice cream (I thought he said cheese steak (a Philly food legend) but cheese steak ice cream would be pretty gross wouldn’t it?!) And actually it was cheesecake which Dad said was amazing. We were all quite restrained in choosing the ‘picolo’ size, which contained two scoops of ice cream. It was enough for us little Brits -tho if I keep eating ice cream I”ll be a not so little Brit!

My Dad's Philly Cheesecake (not steak!) and my mango and pineapple flavours. Yum! Photo by Jess B.

My Dad’s Philly Cheesecake (not steak!) and my mango and pineapple flavours. Yum! Photo by Jess B.

If you’re ever in Philly I totally recommended a trip down to 13th Street. In addition to Duross and Langel and Capogiros, we also went in Open House, a lovely store full of home accessories and gifty things. I literally could have spent hundreds of dollars in there, but Lou led me out before I could, saying ‘Jess we can come back, you’re here for 6 weeks!’  There are lots of little eateries and wine bars along 13th too, as well as street art. Several of the sides of buildings are painted in vibrant colours which really brightens things up. The murals were stunning and really eye catching.

So all in all it was a great afternoon, and the perfect antidote to a week that had been cold and flu filled and far less than perfect. I was very tired Saturday evening and pretty achy after our outing even though we weren’t out for much more than 1.5 hours. But it was progress for me as when we went to Macy’s for the Flower Show I’d had it after 45 minutes and needed to come home.

Post outing tiredness and achiness is pretty much a given with ME / CFS and so totally worth it to get to eat the World’s Best Ice Cream!

Street art. Photo by Jess B.

Street art. Photo by Jess B.

Street art. Photo by Jess B.

Street art. Photo by Jess B.

 

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