Episode 2: Freedom Trail and beyond!
Trip Start Dec 09, 2009
30Trip End Dec 10, 2010
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Well since leaving the Prescott and our private room, we've struggled to find free wi-fi throughout the streets of New York. But here I am Blog 2!
Well I think we pretty much covered Boston over the 5 day's we spent there.
We started at Harvard University - home to the Crimson's and the slightly well educated.
We had now managed to navigate our way round the Boston 'T' system (buses & Trains) so getting from Everett to anywhere was pretty easy.
Harvard was still on our side of the Charles River but please remember this place is cold so we didn't spend long outside where ever possible
We decided to get the bus rather than the subway as the ride up to Harvard sqaure is quite a nice one. We jumped off at the Harvard square stop which is the hub of studentville. Where all the shops are and the main university buildings.
We were keen to find a tour guide to show us the sights and sounds of the uni but unfortunatly our directions were not satisfactory and the length of time spent outside was too much (about 10mins) so we gave up and thought we'd just have a look for ourselves. As we wandered across the qaudrangle surrounded by 16th century buildings and taking photo's of me dangling from the statue of John Harvard, founder, we came across a tour already in progress.
This was the perfect opertunity to inconspicuously tag along at the back.
As we hid quietly at the back it became apparent that this was quite an in-depth tour. Our lovely lady tour guide had been talking about the faculty, study programs, lessons, halls of residence etc. It wasn't until the lady tour guide asked us if we had any further questions that we realised this was a tour for prospective students rather than just gawping tourists.
"Is it difficult transitioning from being top of the class to just another student?" - NO!
Once we had learned all we could the tour lady left us to it and we scurried away to the pub!
We found John Harvards Brew house and sampled the home brew. Apprarently in house breweries are quite popular here!
After another good look around the place and buying the obligatory hoodie & T-shirt we headed back to Everett.
That night we decided to try a night out in Harvard aswell and found a little bar / grill called Tommy Doyles just off the square. We drank pints of local beer and danced to a live band by the name of "Tim McGlean" from Philly. They were good and can by found on Myspace if you would care to hear.
The next morning - another cold one, but it was getting slightly warmer
Fenway Park, home to America's oldest (and best loved) Major League Baseball gorund. We arrived at 10:50 and headed straight for the pub, unfortunatly it was closed until 11am so we walked around the perimitter and checked out the gift shop first.
Bumping into the Tim McGlean boy's from last night, small world! After food and blueberry beer, with actually floating berries in it, we turned up for the 1:00pm tour of Fenway.
We learned all sorts about the game of baseball and were shown all around the ground. Very good fun. The ground itself was covered in ice at the time, not only due to the temperature but also they are holding the Winter Classic there on New Years Day. The Winter Classic is an Ice Hockey game played at the ground once a year. I'm not really sure why?
This year the match is between the Philladelphia Flyers & the Boston Bruins.
After the tour I had only one quetion to ask our tour guide Jamie - "What is a Ground Rule tripple!?" He kept mentioning a ladder which was attached to the green monster
Once we had been truly enlightned on all things baseball we decided to try and wend our way back into town. We were looking for the start of the "Freedom Trail". Due to some scale issues with the map we ended up walking the enitre length of Boston in the rain so by the time we stumbled across our goal it was dark and we were wet.
So we made the decision to note our location and start again tomorrow.
It rained for the rest of the night so we had an early night and watched Bruno on the laptop. Awful film!
Day four in Boston was a busy one. We did indeed get up early and go staright back to the start of the Freedom Trail. Which is essentially a red line painted on the floor which you follow around the streets. It leads past all of the original spots of Boston and is the best they have to offer in terms of history.
We walked past the houses, gravestones & monuments of America's first settlers. We saw the USS Constitution and site of the Boston Tea Party. Ending up on the top of Bunker Hill.
It was a three hour walk and very enlightning, but by the end we were knackered.
So knackered in fact that we decided to walk up the 294 steps inside the Bunker hill monument.
It was a good view from the little window's at the top and we took some good panoramice snaps of greater Boston
After all the exertion we needed a rest so we boarded the local bus to Salem - home to witches apparently. It took an hour to get there and we only had around an hour or two of sunlight still available.
It turned out Salem is not home to any witches so they hanged the poor buggers for nothing! Salem was indeed home to no-one, not a sausage! We wandered the streets for 2 hours and saw only a handfull of souls. The pictures speak for themselves! Signs hung on almost every door simply saying "Closed for the Season". So we went for the bus home.
Another 2 hours later and we were back in good old Everett.
By day 5 I was facing a desperate lack of knickers so we had to make the weekly pilgrimage to the laundromat. A local Italian run joint with a pizza shop attched to the right.
They say leaving home is lesson, well what a struggle! We squeezed two backpacks full of dirty washing into the smallest washer in the place, socks and bra's springing out everywhere! We needed qauters (25 cents) to buy some washing poweder and feed the machine. Julie Burns managed to expertly force feed the change machine her only $5.00 causing the machine to break and management having to be called to release the said $5 bill
We eventually got the machine going and sat and read magzines while our washing barely moved inside the overloaded little machine! Still after a good 40 mintue cylce of washing and drying it came out clean and was re-packed ready for the move the next day.
We dutifully stopped at the next door Pizza shop on the way home and tucked into a 15" mushroom monster before bed!
And that was Boston... the next day we got up early for breakfast and headed to South Station for the bus back to NYC.
Check the photo's thanks for listening. Speak soon.