Alyssa, a lifelong resident of the Northeast, had never been to Boston until this weekend. After spending 24 hours in the city of Alyssa’s dreams, we can safely say we conquered it.
We first went to Cambridge where we found ourselves surrounded by the best and the brightest—cerebral graduate students wearing JanSports and high school students donning Harvard Summer College lanyards. Alyssa accurately expressed our first impression of Harvard when she said “wow, why didn’t I go here?”
After observing Harvard squirrels in their natural environment, we went back into Boston proper and set off on the Freedom Trail in hopes of finding the first public school in the country and Paul Revere’s house. We didn’t quite make it to these historic sites, but we did stumble upon a 5-foot tall ginger outfitted in breeches and a waistcoat. We declined his offer for a free guided tour of the Freedom Trial but did ask him to point us in the direction of Beacon Hill—home to Acorn Street— the world’s/America’s/Boston’s most photographed street. See below for a pic of this “disgustingly cute” street, as described by Paul Revere 2.0.
We know it’s 2011 but we were mildly surprised to have not seen any colonial residents roaming Beacon Hill. The red brick townhouses and stone pathways helped us realize our creative writing dreams. Look out for a colonial era period piece about falling in love and churning butter on the streets of Bean Town, inspired by a soon-to-be written novella. Get at us Academy Awards.
Random thoughts on Boston:
- We started counting Red Sox shirts as soon as we got into the city. Total count: 253. Bostonians seriously love their sports teams. Awesome display of nationalism/regionalism.
- There’s nothing quite like sipping a Sam Adams in Boston. The streets were lined with signs displaying Happy Hour deals for the local lager.
- So many medical students, so little time. Couldn’t help but notice/stake out tons of attractive, scrub clad, aspiring doctors headed to Mass General and Harvard Medical School.
- For the record: though Boston may not be as populated as other cities, jaywalking is still frowned upon there. We tested out the “pedestrians have right-of-way situation” and this just in: they don’t on Newbury Street.
- Food service left something to be desired. First strike: Alyssa ordered a waffle with strawberries at the Trident Book Store/Café but was only served a waffle topped with whip cream. She still ate it and enjoyed it, but the hospitality factor was lacking. Second strike: The ice cream server at J.P. Licks made Elaheh cry by giving her a frozen yogurt serving that barely exceeded the height of the cone. Nobody comes between a moody girl and her ice cream.
- Into collegiate street names like Dartmouth and Bowdoin.
- Boston likes Diet Coke just as much as New York.
- A jaded NYC resident noted that Boston resembles more of a busy town than a city. What does it even mean to be jaded?
- Movie: Julia Roberts tribute, favs include Mystic Pizza, Erin Brockovich, Notting Hill. She gives hope to women everywhere with unusually loud laughs.
- So much vocabulary in The Elegance of the Hedgehog. Should’ve read this when I was studying for the SATs.
- TV show: Grey’s Anatomy. Mass Gen, Seattle Grace, so boss. Catch us watching re-runs while wearing party-favor scrubs from Bar Mitzvahs past.
- Song: Lighters by Eminem feat. Bruno Mars. Did anyone else think that Bruno Mars was singing “scaffold of liars” rather than “sky full of liars”?
- Activity of the week: Checking in places via iPhone. Let all your friends know where you are and what you’re doing. Snorkeling in the Charles River? Lounging casually outside of MGH? Been there, done that, check my Facebook.