It’s been pointed out to me that we never wrote about our trip to Death Valley last April. However, we’re on a special kind of trip this summer: one in which, instead of traveling somewhere to see the place, we have traveled to see the people! Five of our favorite-est people ever have all converged on one location: Boston! Luckily for us, Boston isn’t exactly the worst place in the world to visit, and five-in-one was too good of a deal to pass up! =)
The best part of the trip: being able to spend time with friends that we haven’t seen in a long time, and the fact that they were excited to see us as well. The less-than-perfect part of the trip: Boston is hotter than home, and slightly more humid at times… It even rained once!
Our friends took it upon themselves to make sure that we saw Boston while we were here and got a feel for the city. Here were some of the highlights!
For the first half of the trip, we stayed with Marc and Jen, two of our friends from the Stanford Ballroom Dance Team. They have a spacious top-floor apartment in the South End of Boston, in one of the buildings called Brownstones because they are made all out of brick. And the top of their apartment has a roof deck! So we spent the first evening with everyone on their roof deck after dinner.
Jen gave us a walking tour of a good chunk of the Boston neighborhoods. Starting in the South End neighborhood, we passed through the Back Bay, strolled down the Esplanade along the Charles River, meandered through the shopping area of Beacon Hill, visited the Boston Commons and Public Gardens when we got to Downtown, followed the Freedom Trail for a few blocks and peeked in the fence of a really old cemetery with people we’d read about in history class, and ate and shopped at the Faneuil Hall and Quincy Hall plaza, where Marc joined us after work.
Jen also explored the Museum of Science with us, which is a really fun hands-on activity center more than museum. We analyzed our bodies, the efficiency of our walking, how well we could ignore distractions, our facial recognition ability, etc., and then played with light, freezing shadows, combining our faces, and more!
For the second half of the week, we stayed with David and Janny. David is a good friend from the Berkeley Ballroom Team, and Janny is a lovely musician he has decided to marry. =) Janny explored the Museum of Fine Arts with us, where we did exciting things like re-creating a scene in a painting. This particular painting was a painting of the art gallery in which it was hanging, which also happened to have another picture of an art gallery hanging on its opposite wall… Meta. So meta.
Janny and David also took us to the Ecotarium, a hands-on science museum geared more toward children which happens to have a walkway installed up in the treetops! We spent some time on platforms high up in the top layer of the trees, and then experienced our first zipline to get back down to ground level!
We also got to visit with Jason, Ted’s best friend from high school. Jason showed us some of his favorite spots in East Boston, including this park that has a waterfront area from which you can see all the rest of Boston, and this little stand in the middle of a shipyard at which you can get a drink in the middle of the industrial complex. He also showed us around Cambridge, including his fancy bio lab at MIT and the campuses of MIT and Harvard. Later we watched Inside Out, which was a great movie, with him and his friend Esther. Apparently it’s been a long time since I’ve gone to the theater, because I wasn’t prepared for (a) having my tickets attached to reserved seats (which meant we couldn’t sit together), or (b) having my too-close-to-the-front seat come with a full-on recliner! So fancy!
Throughout the trip, our friends took it upon themselves to make sure that we ate at all the best places in Boston, from local yummy sandwich shops like Flour and Cutty’s to fancier-than-I-ever-eat delights like Barcelona, a tapas restauarant, and Top of the Hub, a restaurant on the top floor of a tall tower from which you have a view of all of Boston—and we got a window seat!
And in between doing all of these exciting things we played lots and lots of board games!!!!!!!
Overall, we have had a wonderful time visiting some wonderful people in Boston and are glad we chose to spend some of our summer here!