We awoke in Boston having actually slept in, ready for coffee downstairs at the hotel-affiliated Starbucks. It satisfied. But by 9:45, we were already en route to Faneuil Hall for some breakfast exploration, only to discover the popular sight had become, to Erin’s memory and to my own eyes, more of a tourist trap than one of historical significance. This old school haunt simply felt overrun by capitalist tendencies to suppress historic emotion and empathy in the name of the almighty generic breakfast sandwich (which, admittedly, I actually purchased. … I was hungry!!)
From the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, we dutifully followed Boston’s “Freedom” Trail” along a several mile route that included the Old State House, Old City Hall, and the Boston Common and Boston Public Garden, which were a revelation in urban beauty and preservation. Erin and I also enjoyed the rich history of the immortals that lay rest at Granary Burying Ground, where we witnessed the gravestones of icons like Sam Adams, John Hancock, and Paul Revere. Incredible churches adorned the urban landscape that were designed like ancient Christian monuments, replete with detailed buttressing and archway molding.
From Granary Burying Ground, we walked to nearby Boston Common, a wonderful green oasis of public park space the celebrates and envelopes New England greenery, ducks and geese, and several memorialized attractions. Just north of the Common is the beautiful, gold-domed State House, where goodness knows many a battle is taking place for issues important to people of the Commonwealth. Our friend Rachel tells us that a good friend from high school is the “AOC of the MA Legislature.”
Speaking of whom, at about 2:30, our cherished friends (and some of yours) Sean and Rachel met us outside the Public Garden. From there, we all made our way to the Charles River Esplanade, where we took solace on a bench and catch up for an hour on all things their lives and ours. Dozens of Bostonians took advantage of the 80 degree weather to lay out alongside the riverbank and docks, and dozens more were sailing the Charles or kayaking by. A nice breeze had finally kicked up to relieve us of weather we seemed to have brought with us from L.A. From there, we venture to the lively and high-end Newbury Street, where brands are exclusive/expensive but the people watching is precious, and there are a few restaurants within our price range. Our favorite stop is for Gelato at Amarino, the most popular Gelato stand in Paris which houses an affiliate right here in Boston. It is delicious, my friends, and if you don’t venture the length of Newbury St. to find it, you’ll be missing out on the BEST Gelato around! (the BEST, Jerry!)
Our wonderful afternoon with Sean and Rachel continued with a walk further down Newbury to “Cafeteria,” a lovely restaurant that was much nicer than its name implies. I enjoyed one of the better Cobb salads I’ve had in a while, but the only thing I can remember anybody else ordering was Rachel’s “Rose(ay) Sangria,” which is a combo of those two very things. … I hope it was good. I don’t think I would have tried that even in my old days. But as our evening came to a close, we enjoyed a nice long walk back to Sean and Rachel’s car along Boylston Street. The name of the street sounded familiar to me, but it wasn’t until we ran into the Boston Bombing Memorial that I was shook into remembering why. In fact, a wave of guilt washed over me as I realized I had been in Boston for 24 hours and hadn’t given a thought at all to the Bombing. As you can likely discern from the photo here, the installation isn’t overwhelming but really can’t be missed by passers by, making it street practical but also noticeable enough to be appreciated even from a dozen yards away.
Having Earned our 10,000 steps x 3 for the day, Erin and I retired to our rather nice Courtyard by Marriott on the North Side, and took in a little Emmy viewing while also keeping an eye on the Rams/Browns contest. The Emmy’s starting at 8:00PM and running until 11:00 is a bit of a change for us of course, given we always enjoy awards shows at the leak/spoiler free 5:00 hour. Though we are huge fans of Veep, we were ecstatic to see big acting wins for “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” and all kinds of statues go to “Fleabag” and it’s writer/creator, house favorite Phoebe Waller-Bridge. I really do hate Amazon’s monopoly on logistics and consumer products, but I love Prime Video programming … making me exactly the problem with America. But one can’t deny Emmy’s 2019 was a huge night for the powerhouse company.
Tomorrow, we finally trek to Maine! But to hold you over, here’s another little bonus photo / trivia tidbit for you: