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Tuesday
Aug092011

Wanderer Of The World: Boston

I still have summer flings, lovies. With places. And a couple weeks ago I had another one. What can I say, I have a wandering eye soul. 

My little family and I were getting the itch to travel. It comes around, probably too often, especially in the summertime when life seems so fancy free and footloose. When the rays of sun seem like roadmaps to new and adventurous places. Cheap plane tickets were in short supply, so we decided to embark on a good old fashioned road trip. We dubbed it North by Northeast, from Boston to Maine, and onward and up the coast we went. 

It is moments like these that I am eternally grateful that we kept one of our cars when we moved into the city. Sometimes it can seem like an extravagant expense. We have to pay an arm and a leg for our car's little apartment - it's indoor parking space. But my nomadic spirit is never crushed by having to reserve a car that may not be available or convenient to retrieve to go on vacation, and more importantly, to visit our families outside of the city. After this trip, paying our car's rent next month will be undoubtedly easier.

We kicked our road trip into high gear on a Friday morning, braking for a massive salt spill in Connecticut and one little boy's inability to tolerate a donut while driving down I-95 in Massachusetts.

But. We made it. 

I am a road-less-traveled, boutique-hotel kind of girl. And one hotel I've been dying to try is The Ames. It is a hotel converted from an old shovel factory. I am absolutely smitten with it, from the rad bikes you can borrow to roll around town to the super spiffy beauty products in the rooms {Think: rum body wash. It's true!}. It was swanky, but comfortable. I was mentally redecorating my apartment our entire time there. I even loved the throw on the bed so much I may, or may not, have bought it from the hotel. Wink. Even CJ loved it. I would go back to Boston just to stay at The Ames. So dreamy. 

We didn't pack many expectations or lists of things to do, but any hint of ideas we had were quickly snuffed out. Literally. It was 105 degrees the day we got into town. I am convinced there are still puddles of us pooled around Boston. We ditched Plans A, B and C and went right to the meaty stuff - water activities and ice cream. 

We wallowed from one watering hole to the next. First Frog Pond at Boston Commons {it was so blistery outside that I even tipped my toes in} and then we pranced through a sprinkler park in the heart of downtown. For hours we only stepped away from the water to graze on an icy treat. We grabbed a white peach ice cream cone from Emack & Bolio's. The shop was so sweet. Literally. You could get your waffle cone dipped in rise krispie treats or fruity pebbles. Yum-o. 

After sponging up all of the water in Boston, we ducked indoors. We hit up the New England Aquarium where CJ made friends with a turtle named Myrtle, looked at fish that he said "were from Dr. Seuss," and even got to "hug," {his words} stingrays and touch starfish, which he said were "crispy." Afterwards, worn and weary, we fueled up with goodies like fried dough nuggets and clam chowdah at Quincy Market

When the sun finally burnt out for the day we decided to trek out to walk the Freedom Trail. Boston is a city steeped in so much history I would have hate to have missed it. CJ marveled at statues of Sam Adams and finally conked out somewhere between the Paul Revere House and the Bunker Hill Monument. Greg and I continued on under the bulbous, yellow gaslights that line the streets. As we held hands it felt like we were sealed together by the thick blanket of heat still in the air. It felt romantic and giddy to be taking in the Public Gardens before the clock struck midnight. It was quiet and calm after a busy day. As a parent traveling with a young child, you've got to take the few precious moments of peace where you can.

At one intersection of the park we happened up a practice performance for Shakespeare's "All's Well That Ends Well." We huddled under a giant tree and secretly snooped on the performance, CJ hunched peacefully next to us in a deep sleep. It felt mysterious, like we had stumbled upon an opening in the woods where a secret meeting was taking place. 

The next morning we took our breakfast back to the Public Gardens to watch the swan boats launch in the light of day and see the spearmint shrubs and hedges pop to life out of the shadows of night.

220 miles down, 108 miles to Portland to go. 

Stay tuned for pics from Maine tomorrow. Confession: it was my favorite part of the trip.

Have you ever been to Boston? What are some of your favorite parts, restaurants, shops?

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Reader Comments (2)

love the pictures. have fun! never been to boston. would love to go!

August 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGlenda

Love love love this family travelogue...felt like I was there!

August 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterElissa

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