My parents came up to our house Thursday evening as our flight was leaving at 6AM Friday morning. Of course, I was busy getting the last minute packing done and probably worrying about out trip so I really didn't get any sleep before we got up at 3am to head to the airport.
We got up, dressed, kissed the kiddos goodbye and made it to the airport with time to spare, we got checked in and made it through security in a reasonable amount of time. Although I did set the metal detectors off and had to go into the glass cubical for a friendly pat down. Peter just stood outside and laughed at me! We were flying Jet Blue, we left on time, had a smooth flight and got into Boston about 7:30am.
We took the subway into the city and then tried to figure out where we were and where we were headed. We knew it was too early to check into the hotel so we decided to get some breakfast first. We stopped at Bruegger's Bagel Bakery to get a bagel and coffee, the bagels were wonderful!
After fortifying ourselves with a bagel we decided to walk around a little before heading towards the hotel. Since neither of us had really slept we were hopeful that the carbs would keep us going for a while.
Here is Peter checking out info about the graves in Kings Chapel Burying Ground. This picture is proof that Peter was in Boston. We tend to come home with pictures of "stuff" and no pictures showing that we were actually there! This time we tried to get more pictures of "us" and less of "stuff", we did better than we usually do!
There are window washers on this building, it is hard to see because they look so tiny. I'm not sure I would want that job.
Quincy Market, like a huge food court! There was a great pastry shop in there too! But as we learned later not near as good as Mike's Pastry in the Italian area. We ended up coming by here a lot, apparently it was "on the way" to everything we were going to!
The place on the corner was called "The Littlest Bar". It ended up being close to our hotel but we never made it there for a drink. When we were planning this trip we were excited about all the pubs and bars, we were looking forward to spending some evenings out with no curfew. I wanted to go to an Irish bar and sing along with the music. It turns out that we realized that
1. we are getting old
2. once we had the chance to sleep we seized it
3. since we no longer stay up late we seem to have lost the talent for staying awake till midnight
4. I repeat, we are getting old.
After walking around for a couple hours we made our way down to the waterside near our hotel. We were staying at the InterContinental Boston which is located on the waterfront in the financial district. When we got there we asked if we could leave our luggage there while we continued to walk around, we were getting very tired of lugging the luggage! They told us that our room was ready and we could go ahead and check in.
Hotel room, view from hallway.
After settling into our room, relaxing for a bit, checking out the TV (another novelty for us) we were hungry again and decided to head back out to get something to eat and sight see more. We walked through the financial district and up to the Boston Common to the start of the Freedom Trail. There we started following the trail.
The first stop in the State House, we walked up to the door of the State House but decided we really didn't want to tour it so we continued on the trail.
Next stop was Park Street Church, didn't go into the church, just read the info on the outside.
Then onto Granary Burying Ground. There are several famous people buried here including John Hancock, Paul Revere, Samuel Adams. Additionally the Boston Massacre victims were interred in the family tomb of Sam Adams.
Samuel Adams grave
There were a number of guided tours being held, we had rejected the idea of the guided tour but after overhearing some of the tales the guides were telling we decided it might have been very interesting. We got to eavesdrop on a few interesting facts at each stop to supplement what we knew about the area.
The next stop is Kings Chapel and Kings Chapel Burying Ground. One interesting fact, the columns that appear to be stone are actually just painted wood columns. Since we had already stopped and looked around earlier that day when we first got into town so we just breezed on through.
Benjamin Franklin Statue and the Boston Latin School...we paused to look and then continued on.
Old Corner Bookstore - we had actually looked at the outside of this that morning. It is located right next to the place we got bagels. The building was closed that day so we didn't go in.
Old South Meeting House - this is where thousands of Bostonians took part in the debate of what to do with the tea shipment from England. The debate that led to what we now know as the Boston Tea Party.
Old South Meeting House
Old State House - The Boston Massacre happened outside of this building and the Declaration of Independence was read from the balcony to the people of Boston.
The Boston Massacre Site - I had been told that this could be difficult to spot since it is just a circle of stones the the median. However, it wasn't even visible when we were there. They were doing road work and had most of the median covered up and boarded walkways around it so you couldn't see anything.
Next stop Faneuil Hall, we went through the building and then into Quincy Market for lunch. Quincy Market has a large food court, you can find just about any type of food there. We got our lunch and then sat outside to eat. It was a sunny, warm day, so there were lots of people and street performers out and about. It was so warm that we got hot sitting outside eating our lunch. I thought that the weather would be cool so we had brought cool weather clothes but it had warmed up unexpectedly and we were wishing we had brought short sleeves and shorts instead of long sleeves and jeans.
After lunch we continued on the trail. We walked by some really cool old restaurants and pubs. We passed We walked past Union Oyster House, the oldest restaurant in Boston, open since 1826. We also walked through an incredible Farmer's Market. They had tons of produce and insanely cheap prices. I was salivating and wanting to buy lots of fresh fruit and veggies but restrained myself. I saw red peppers for $.50 each, pints of raspberries for $1.25, peaches 10 for $1.....ridiculous prices! I don't know if it is always that cheap or they were trying to get rid of stock. Anyway, we kept walking...
Paul Revere House - We had wanted to tour the house but for some reason decided not to. Probably because we were too cheap to pay the admittance fee. The location of the house is really neat too, it is located in a charming cobblestoned square.
Paul Revere house
Paul Revere house, view from across the street
looking up the street, Paul Revere house is to the left of where we are standing
one of the many neat buildings in the area, notice the detail on the windows
The Old North Church - The tallest steeple in Boston, 191 feet high. Lanterns were placed in the steeple to signal the movement of the British. "One if by land, two if by sea" in Longfellow’s Paul Revere’s Ride.
Old North Church
In the courtyard area there is a statue of Paul Revere, for some reason I only took a picture from the backside.
I would like to explain this picture...but I don't know what to say.
steeple of the Old North Church
Continuing on...Copp's Hill Burying Ground. Cotton and Increase Mather were both buried here. Some of the gravestones were actually damaged during the Revolutionary War.
Bunker Hill Monument - we didn't walk all the way to the monument, we thought we would come back to that later and decided to go on to the next stop.
USS Constitution - we didn't actually get to go onto Old Ironsides, we missed the last tour of the day. We thought maybe we would come back another day.
We did go into the museum and tour that, they also had an interesting movie about the history of the ship. After that we briefly discussed walking back to Bunker Hill but decided not to. We were getting really tired, we had been walking most of the day and hadn't really slept the night before. Besides, I had absolutely torn up my feet with the walking, apparently my walking shoes weren't really made for walking. I had so many raw spots I was doing a very undignified limp. We decided to take the ferry back to our hotel so that we could skip walking back. It was a wonderful choice! It was cheap, fun to ride, great view of the city and we got to sit down!
The ferry dropped us off only a few blocks from our hotel, so cool! We stopped by a 7-11, bought some orange juice and vodka...how cool is that to be able to buy vodka at 7-11. I also got some bandages and stuff to try and repair my feet. We got back to the hotel and chilled for about an hour before changing clothes and getting ready for dinner. We started walking around to find a place to eat, the hotel had recommended a few places. Some we didn't find interesting, some were too pricey, some too long a wait. We ended up eating at a little place kind of near our hotel. It was called Sel De La Terre, they served Provencal French food. We sat out on the patio and enjoyed a lovely meal. Peter ate duck and I had gnocchi with lobster. We decided to walk over to Quincy's Market and get some pastries for dessert but by the time we got there the pastry shop had closed. However, the market place was really pretty at night, the trees are lit up with lights, it was really nice just to walk around.
After walking around a bit we headed back to the hotel and literally passed out. It had been a fun day but we were exhausted!
'til next time...