Boston

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False alarm

Friday, May 4th, 2012

I am spending the weekend in Boston with my dear friend Christina. Boston is one of my favorite cities, and Christina is one of my favorite friends, so in other words, everything is wonderful.

Before I boarded my flight on Thursday, I got an email from Christina saying, “Hope your flight leaves on time and that you’re not sitting next to another trademark weirdo” – bizarre plane-interactions seeming to be par for the course for me.

When I found myself seated next to a nondescript, completely silent gentleman, I was overjoyed. The 4-hour flight was without incident and without conversation – which equates to a hearty “hallelujah” from this introvert. We descended quietly into Boston, and I stared out the window at the clear night sky.

But as we taxied to the gate, something happened. Something surprising. Something shocking.

In the dark and silent plane, the man next to me suddenly yelled at the top of his lungs, “IT’S SNOWING!”

My head was suddenly on a swivel. Where do I look? Outside! At the man! Around at the other passengers! Back outside! Every person on the plane had turned to look at my row-mate, who was staring blankly ahead, ignoring all attention and acting as if nothing had happened.

It was not snowing.

He wasn’t even sitting by the window.

Eventually, I took a cue from the man and stared straight ahead, too.

“I think I’ll go to Boston”

Friday, April 15th, 2011

If you were to look at the “Most Played” playlist in my iTunes*, right there at the very top of the list would be “Boston” by Augustana.  Number one.

This strikes me as very strange, since I don’t really love this song so much I want to marry it.  I mean, sure, it’s catchy – but have I really listened to it more than ANY other song on my iPod?  Seriously?  Do I have an alter ego who takes over once the earbuds are in?  I don’t believe you, iTunes.  I am baffled – flummoxed, even – as to how this has happened.

In any case, yesterday, I said, “You don’t know me, you don’t even care – I think I’ll go to Boston.”  And to Boston I went.

I love this city so much.  From the first time that I arrived here (by bus, no less), I have had a raging crush on Boston.  Something good happens to me – to my heart and to my soul – when I’m here.

And this time, lobster is going to happen to me.

– – – – – – – –

*Over on AnnieBlogs today, she’s talking about her top 5 most loved songs according to iTunes.  Hand to heart, I wrote this before I read her blog this morning.  This is just further proof that she and I are connected on a deep level, and made for each other.

Gone to Pleasure Bay

Friday, October 16th, 2009

So much has happened in the last day.

First of all, the helium balloon.

WHAT.

Is this the weirdest story ever?  First of all, that this Jiffy Pop contraption actually existed – and in someone’s backyard, no less.  Secondly, that the entire country was thrown into a frenzy when it was reported that there was a 6-year old boy inside, adrift.  And his name was FALCON.

When I found out that he was okay, that he had been hiding the entire time, I was in the airport getting boarding a flight to Boston.  My mom called me and told me that they found him hiding in the garage attic.  And when I hung up the phone, I got all teary – because this is amazing?  This is the best news ever?  And I am PMSing?  So leave me alone.

But then!  I arrive in Boston to the news that it’s gotten even weirder!  The family had been on “Wife Swap” – the show that makes Jon & Kate look like Ward & June Cleaver.  And when asked why he didn’t come out of hiding when he heard his name being called, little Falcon said, “You guys said we did this for the show.”

Oh, snap!  Right there on “Larry King Live.”

I’ll choose to just be happy that he’s okay, because this could turn into a circus.

Anyhoo.

I’m in Boston!  And this is the weather.

picture-1

It’s putting a damper on my plans, since today was meant for some solo exploring outside on foot while my friends are busy.  But you know what?  I’m going to do it anyway.  Here’s where I’m going to go walk in the freezing rain right now:

picture-2-arrows

Doesn’t that look like fun?  Walking out into the middle of the ocean??  Around PLEASURE BAY?

And now that I have spent 20 minutes creating a map with arrows that, at this point, is useless to anyone but me, I just want to point you toward one last thing.

My littlest sister, Sarah, is in her last year of nursing school.  The things that nurses know, and know how to do, blows my mind – the medical realm is so far outside my small scope of knowledge.  Last night, she wrote a post about an experience that had me riveted.  I can’t believe how much she has experienced, the lives she is making a difference in, and the incredible path she has chosen.  I am bursting with pride.

A day away can transform uncertainty and renew the spirit.
-Maya Angelou

A collection of thoughts

Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

Controversial foods that I happen to love:
Olives
Mushrooms
Beets

Controversial foods that I happen to hate:
Tuna
Pickles
Cauliflower

Cauliflower is the worst. It makes me think of cauliflower ear.

I have a serious addiction to chewing gum, but I ran out about 8 days ago, and have yet to buy a new pack. Every morning after my two cups of coffee, I reach for a piece of minty freshness, and realize that my purse is empty. I spend the rest of the day going through withdrawal. Why I don’t just go buy a new pack of gum is beyond me – maybe I’m trying to prove my ruggedness of spirit.

Speaking of spirit, last night, I mentioned my “melancholy spirit” to Zach, the friend from Seattle who now lives on the JAM house floor (JAMZ?). He told me to not to call it that – because there is a difference between “spirit” and “temperament,” and that my spirit is actually quite fiery. I think that’s true – and it was nice to hear from an outside source.

Also last night, I sang background vocals for one of PZC’s grad school projects – he set up a makeshift isolation booth in his closet, and I sang from there while he and Zach sat silently in chairs in the middle of the bedroom. Occasionally, one of Paul’s roommates would poke their head into the room and find us thusly. That thought is making me laugh today.

I go to Boston tomorrow. If Seattle is my true love, then Boston is my crush. Seattle is to Edward as Boston is to Jacob – although, no, I still have not finished “Eclipse,” so I don’t know how it’s all going to end, and who knows – maybe Bella will wind up with a werewolf after all. At this rate, I may never know. I don’t fully believe that she has “just friends” feelings for Jacob, no matter how many times her annoying narrative voice insists upon it. I kind of want to take the book with me on the plane, but what if I still don’t read it? It’s a huge, heavy, embarrassing novel to be toting around and flashing to strangers if I’m not actually going to read it.

But I want to know how it all ends.

Don’t tell me, though.

Overkill

Saturday, December 15th, 2007

Last night, I left Christina and Dan’s apartment to meet them at their downtown law firm. In addition to running a bit behind, the sidewalks were slushy from the previous day’s snow, so rather than walking, I decided to take a cab.

I don’t know how, but I somehow made it to last night without ever hailing a taxi. IN MY LIFE.

As I walked out to Cambridge Street, I tried to psych myself up. “You can do this – you’ve seen people do this a million times. You just raise your arm, and one stops. It will work. It will work.”

But I don’t know what came over me. I couldn’t help myself. The first cab that I saw, I raised my arm, and screamed, “Tak-SAAAAAAY!” just like I’ve seen in the movies, except far more obnoxious. Of course, one immediately stopped. And as I climbed inside, I started laughing – mostly out of embarrassment, but also because THAT WAS SO AWESOME.

A very Boston day

Wednesday, December 12th, 2007

This afternoon, I walked from Beacon Hill to the Back Bay, and then over to Cambridge to explore Harvard, and finally, back to Beacon Hill. It was about an 8-mile walk, and it felt good to stretch my legs after, you know, quitting exercise this fall. Boston is beautiful, and if I wasn’t so set on Nashville, I would seriously consider moving here.

Sadly, I did not spot any “Harvard Hotties” in Cambridge. In fact, I realized that a significant part of the Harvard population is made up of college freshman – and I just can’t “go young.” I walked around the campus for awhile, but eventually was intimidated by the electricity of brain waves in the air, so I bought myself a coffee and left.

Christina took me to Pizzeria Regina in the North End for dinner, which is billed as being the “World’s! Best! Pizza!” We were not disappointed. They even gave us our Sangiovese in big tumblers.

We ended our night by watching “The Departed,” with a Boston mob history lesson from Dan, Christina’s husband. It was the best kind of day: walking for miles and miles, only to eat well in the evening, and watch some serious Scorsese carnage.

Boston, my booty – and my belly – thank you.

Overheard in Boston

Monday, December 10th, 2007

“I mean, how ironic is this: I’m a ROOFER, and I got SHINGLES.”

Pure poetry.

Fung Wahhhhhhh????

Sunday, December 9th, 2007

I am convinced that the loneliest feeling in the world is walking through the streets of New York on a Sunday morning all by one’s self, pulling over 100 lbs. of luggage, and having to navigate the stairs down into the subway. Oh, and then to eject said self from the train straight back up the stairs into Chinatown, and lug one’s belongings like a pack mule, searching for the Fung Wah bus to Boston – which, by the way, provides no guarantee that it will make it to Boston without exploding on the freeway or blowing a tire. A regular occurrence, I’m told.

Thus began my morning.

When I finally arrived at the ticket window, my hands were blistered from pulling my bags, and I could scarcely sign my name on the form for my shaking extremities. I loaded my suitcases onto the bus, and boarded.

This is where I realized that God never wastes anything. Thinking back to September, my sister’s dog Gabe barfed on the backseat of my car, and I almost barfed right on top of it. I now know that that unsavory event was simply in preparation for the smell on-board the Fung Wah. It was as if the good Lord gave me an early, preparatory dosage of repulsive stench to ready and steady me for today’s odor.

Luckily, I secured a window seat, and wound up sitting behind two teenage kids who were sharing one set of iPod earbuds and a box of Frosted Flakes. Note to self: do not chew dry cereal in public. The crunch very well could earn you a good throttling.

The hoodlum behind me failed to silence the obnoxious ringer on his cell phone, and talked continuously to his various homies. “Yo, dawg, what up? Ah, I’m on the bus. You know how it is.” Sir? Do they, really?

We embarked on what can only be described as a terrifying journey in a glorified sardine can, hurtling across New England. But how can I complain? For $15 and in just 4 hours, it got me where I was going: Boston, to Christina’s Beacon Hill apartment, with exposed brick walls, and wine and cheese and olives waiting on the table.

More about the end of my New York adventure tomorrow. Until then, Boston beckons.