For those who don’t know, we just got back from a weekend visiting Gillian in Boston. About 20 minutes before we left a huge oak tree fell across our neighbor’s yard. It was sunny and beautiful, no wind, no nothin’. I guess it’s time to start having those oak-tree-falls-through-our-roof-and-kills-us-in-our-sleep panic attacks again. Amazingly it didn’t hit anyone’s house, or anyone’s car, or take down any powerlines, and according to our neighbor narrowly missed a runner. It even missed the mailbox and satellite dish in the yard where it fell. Here are some pictures:
(there’s a whole house back there!)
View of our house from the base of the tree:
Looking up the street (that’s our mailbox on the right):
After that excitement we left for the airport where the following conversation took place (in several parts, starting on the way in the car):
(in the car)
Shannon: You do have the confirmation numbers for our flight, right?
Shannon: You’re lying, aren’t you?
(at the kiosk at the airport)
Shannon: Don’t we need the confirmation number?
Matt: I’ve never needed it before. (putting card into machine)
Machine: Please enter your confirmation number.
(in line for manual check-in, after standing in the same place for approximately 10 minutes)
Matt: I’m going to call my dad and get the confirmation number. (calls Jim and after several tries gets the number written down and turns to the kiosk which happens to be right next to where we are standing in line to try again)
Machine: Please insert card. (Matt inserts card) Thanks for flying AirTran. I will now print your boarding passes without needing any confirmation number whatsoever.
Finally, we got to Boston and Gillian met us at the airport. We had a fantastic dinner at a local restaurant and went to bed to ready ourselves for the busy day ahead.
Gillian and Matt (and hotdogs) are awesome:
And they have the shirts to prove it:
We started the morning with a fantastic breakfast at a local restaurant in JP (Jamaica Plain), ate our faces off, and were off to take pictures in front of Gillian’s local library branch:
Gillian would like you to know that her name starts with a “C”:
Then we were off to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum to get some culture (no pictures allowed inside, as enforced by some very severe-looking guards so we took a picture from across the street). That is not a guard with her arms outstretched, just some random passerby:
Then we walked through a park where we saw some of the (many) fowl with which Gillian is currently obsessed:
Those who know me know that I was thrilled to be this close to geese, babies or no babies:
Next we headed to a rose garden:
We missed our baby, but everywhere you go there’s a giant baby head with a cheek to pinch, so that was comforting:
Next we went to see where Gillian works and eventually headed back to her place to collect our things and take the train to our hotel to check in and get ready for the evening.
Gillian’s front door:
After we checked in, settled in, and showered we met my freshman-year college roommate and her husband for drinks.
Sarah, Shannon, and all 14 of Shannon’s chins:
We hung out for a couple of hours and then said our goodbyes and headed off for dinner in the North End. We ate at a fantastic little Italian seafood restaurant with about 6 tables and an hour wait. It was worth every minute and I had the best alfredo of my life. After that we headed back to the hotel for a little relaxation and a good night’s sleep:
The next morning we met at 10:30 with the intention of getting tickets for a park service tour of part of the Freedom Trail, but when we got there it turned out that they’d changed the times without updating the website, so we went to one of the three Dunkin’ Donuts we passed in the half mile between our hotel and the park service office and ate Boston “Kreme” donuts in Boston. Next we headed to the Granary Burial Ground, which was conveniently across the street from our hotel.
Ben Franklin’s parents’ grave:
Next we headed over to Boston Common:
Swans ‘a nesting (further fueling Gillian’s fowl obsession):
Boston loves a man on a horse:
Next we headed over to the water:
After a quick rest we grabbed some lunch and went back to the park service office to try again for a tour (this time successfully). After we got the tickets we had thirty minutes to burn and Matt and Gillian got iced coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts. While we were inside we saw where Matt would park if he lived in Boston:
Then were off on our tour. Here are some highlights:
Old State House:
Supposed site of the Boston “Massacre:”
Gus, atop Faneuil Hall:
Paul Revere’s house:
Again, Boston loves a man on a horse:
Old North Church:
Inside Old North Church:
Second floor of Faneuil Hall:
Matt, starting a Revolution:
After a quick trek through Quincy Market we headed back to the hotel to collect our bags and hit the T towards the airport. Before we actually made it home we took the wrong shuttle bus, waited in a ridiculous security line, waited on the plane forever while AirTran tried (and eventually succeeded in) bribing someone to get an overbooked passenger on our flight. After about 6 total hours of travel, we finally made it home to see that everything was exactly how we left it (including the tree in the neighbor’s yard, which was removed today). A good time was had by all.