Boston. We love you ❤️

Despite the cool. Despite the rain – we decided we love Boston.

It’s easy to get around. It’s a great walking city. There’s lots to see and the food is great.

This morning, we had coffee, did our washing and headed off. First a visit to Faneuil Hall. What a great market place for food. The fresh food markets are nearby and the cooked prepared foods are inside.

We jumped in an Uber and were at Harvard Sq by 10.30. Our guide Mike was quite the performer. In fact half way through the tour he told us in was in a drag show that night.

He was a good fun guide and kept the large group informed and moving along.

We heard lots of stories about how Harvard got its name, how women were not admitted until the 90’s. Women studied at Radcliffe. Now it is coeducational and women are dominating the numbers. We heard about living in the houses. 90% live on campus.

We heard about the buildings. They are grand and lovely.

One of the houses for students. JFK lived here.

The Library in particular is stunning and built with money donated.

Unfortunately you have to be a student to enter but Mike told us to visit the Boston Public Library as it had a reading room identical to that at Harvard.

After the tour we visited the Harvard Art Gallery. It’s a very good collection. Much has been donated by past students.

Georgia O’Keeffe

Man Ray. I thought he only did photography!

Now it was time for a good piece of American history. We went out to the JFK Museum. It’s a very grand structure about 20 mins from the city centre facing the Boston Harbour.

An orchestra performed in the atrium.

Lots of film clips if JFKs speeches. He was charismatic.

Beautiful rooms with memorabilia of the times

Then it was back to the city to the Boston Public Library. What a wonderful building. Old at the front and linked with a courtyard to a new serviceable part at the back.

The old………

And the new

We walked back to North End past

Trinity Church

The Boston Common with a Japanese festival!

Through the theatre district, Faneuil Hall and straight to the Oyster Company. It was at this stage my phone died so no pictures ! 😢

But I can describe the big succulent plump oysters, the Prosecco to give them life, and the smart jokes from the oyster shuckers as we sat at the round oyster bar chatting to a lovely couple from New Hampshire. These Americans are so friendly.

We called into book a table at one of the many good Italian restaurants in North End. Tonight it was ‘Strega’. Steve was over the moon with his veal chop stuffed with prosciutto. I loved my risotto de mare. again!

We finished with a limoncello and planned our trip tomorrow.

April Showers in Boston

We woke to grey skies and April showers. So if you’re planning a trip to this part of the world avoid April!

But it had to be bad to stop us. Steve kindly went to Modern the pastry shop around the corner.

http://www.modernpastry.com

It’s amazing, as is Mike’s – but a local told us to visit Modern. Steve arrived back with coffee and a cannoli!

It’s not something I would usually have for breakfast but it’s cold and we’re on holidays and it’s got ricotta in it so that’s good? OK?

It set me up for the Freedom Trail.

https://www.thefreedomtrail.org/visit

If in Boston put this on your list. It’s great. We downloaded the notes and decided to tour ourselves. There are walking tours but you don’t need to do that.

We set off all rugged up and decided, as our apartment is in the middle of the trail, we’d start from our place and reverse the order! Made sense to us.

We stopped at the first State House.

A great place to start the story of Boston. We did a tour and our lovely young ‘education officer’ spoke at a rapid pace so we had lots to take in!

By now the rain had stopped so we wandered along with the other walkers of the trail coming the opposite way towards us!

There are some great public statues including these in the Irish Square.

I really enjoyed the Granary Burial Ground where many of the key figures of the Revolution are buried including Paul Revere, Samual Adams, John Hopkins are all resting in peace.

I also liked the footpath game of hopscotch outside the first school.

Kings Chapel was lovely. Designed by architect Peter Harrison – no, not our friend Peter!

The new State House stands proudly above The Common.

It’s beautiful. Completed in 1798 it’s dome was done in copper by Paul Revere! He was a coppersmith. It was overlaid with gold leaf.

Today there was a crowd outside the house and names were being read out. Lots of names. All had died through workplace fatalities over the years. Quite moving in its simplicity.

We walked through the Common, a really lovely public space with a big history and loved seeing the squirrels!

This park would be lovely on a sunny day. By now we had reached the beginning of the Freedom Trail. but for us it was only half done. It was time for lunch. We headed across to Beacon Hill. This area is a gentile place to walk.

Spring plantings are everywhere. It’s a pity it doesn’t feel Spring-like today!

We found a warm place for lunch. Soup for me and a Reuben sandwich for Steve.

I remembered great bookshops from years ago when I visited with my sister but the one in this area had gone, so I found another in nearby Newbury St. ‘Just a short walk’ I told Steve! Well it was the other end of a very long street. A very interesting long street with lots of shops – mostly big names operating out of lovely old brownstone houses.

We rewarded ourselves with a hot chocolate for Steve and a latte for me but we were surprised by the things you could add to your hot drinks. We decided on CBD. Read about it here!

I wonder if my aches and pains will go.

We still had a lot of walking to do.

To mix it up a bit we got an Uber to the end of the trail and decided to walk it backwards.

Now Jo Jo, our larger than life very friendly driver was all chatty. She was into food, so we got a good run down on where to eat.

We ended up at Bunker Hill and the museum. Really interesting.

We kept on walking despite the chill and the rain and ducked into a church as it looked so interesting.

Low and behold a father and his daughter – the bride! – were inside the door waiting for the music to make an entrance.

They encouraged us in but we hovered in the foyer till she had made her entrance.

She looked beautiful and it took me back (and made me teary) because at about this time last year, on a Friday, Rob and Jordan got married in Santa Barbara. The date is actually tomorrow but it was a Friday. Fortunately they had beautiful Spring weather with blue skies.

We blew out into the street again and walked across the bridge back into the city.

It was soooooo cold.

We finished the walk. It was so interesting. Now we’re tucked up in our apartment drinking a glass of red bought across the street at a lovely wine shop.

We’ll stumble out for dinner a little later.

Tomorrow more walking. We’re off to Harvard for a tour.