back east: day two

thursday night’s delicious meal at franklin cafe in boston’s south end had us directly home to the hotel to watch barack’s acceptance speech in a horizontal, digestive position. i will admit, i didn’t make it through the whole thing…but falling asleep with a full belly and a heart full of hope isn’t a bad way to hit the sack early.
…friday morning, i was up early, pumped myself full of caffeine, and hit the town.
underneath the views of the prudential tower, was charlie’s sandwich shop, our breakfast spot du jour. open for eighty-one years, this delightfully weathered diner had big slide letter menus above the grill, long-covered with year-by-year photos of kids in halloween costumes and snapshots of the owner with various celebrities–actors i couldn’t quite name, and local sports owners, managers, and players that i certainly couldn’t name. we were seated at a six-top table with a four-person family, and shared green tobasco and maple syrup with them. i love that about old restaurants. why waste space when you can make friends? i had blueberry pancakes and bacon, and there was more than i could possibly eat of both. just before we left, i snapped a picture of the shiny stools lined up at the breakfast bar. the waitress (one of the young ones in the old photos above the grill) asked to see it, and remarked, that’s a nice shawt, hanny. a real interesting shawt.

next, up to the top of the prudential tower for a just-a-speck-of-a-person observations of boston and beyond. favorite voyeuristic view: watching a boy dipping his legs into a reflecting pond, each kick sending out a wave…that i watched flow in circular rings across the entire block-long pool.

hopping on the T, took us down to the isabella stewart gardner muesuem. the gardners were some old- school high society folk who decided (or rather isabella decided, and john, her husband, fronted the bill) to acquire art pieces from all over the globe and design and build a house to hold the collection. and that’s what fenway court, as isabella called it, was and is–left pretty close to how she arranged everything, which gives the muesum a haunted/ethereal air. i liked the chinese loggia, which was an indoor garden room with artifacts from dynasties listed in roman numerals. very cool. and the courtyard. wow. if only they allowed photography. three ideas i am stealing from ol’ isa: standardized campanula (if you know what i am talking about, then you are a fellow plant geek and i love you.) tiny doors hung on the wall (i currently roll with old windows as art.) matted and framed fabric (even though mine won’t be from the 1400’s.)

once again, we hopped on the ol’ T using our charlie card, pronounced “cha-lie caad” if you grew up in boston–named for the kingston trio’s song M.T.A. that my dad and i used to sing on road trips.
…beware: you will sing be singing it for a couple days after you listen. it’s catchy..

lunch was at charlie’s kitchen in harvard square (is it just me or is the name charlie highly prevalent in boston?) i had chowda and a delicious black bean burger and dove into jonathan safran foer’s extremely loud & incredibly close, after finishing the life of pi by yann martel. don’t you love when you get on a streak of good books? i do. please read both if you haven’t already–they are both so good, and in completely different ways. completely. after lunch, ice cream, of course. j.p. licks has handmade ice cream (lumpy primate is their answer to fellow east coaster’s ben & jerry’s chunky monkey)
and get this–astroturf as wallpaper. kudos j.p.

after ice cream, back on the T of course. back to fenway, only this time, fenway park for a red sox game. although i do enjoy tigers games, i am not the biggest sports girl. however, it is impossible to not feel the excitement at this old-tyme ballpark. from the green monster to the choice of fonts for the signs,
fenway is a classic.


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