On a rainy Saturday in Boston, I arrive at South station, and as I buy a coffee (excellent) and an almond croissant (too sweet and greasy) I ponder what is a tourist to do in the rain? So as City View Trolley tours have a special offer of 20$, I buy a ticket and hop aboard. With the exchange rate at the dollar worth 60p everything seems cheap, just over half of UK prices
Our guide is called Dexter, I think, and he was very entertaining as he told us tales of Boston history old and new and pointed out places of interest. I always think these tours are a good introduction to the layout and history of a city.
The rain eased to a drizzle, nothing to a Lancashire girl like me, so I got off at the magnificent State house and started to walk along the path of red bricks of the freedom trail. A must for every Boston tourist. I used an app I had previously downloaded to help me around.
Through Boston common
I called and viewed some of the graves in the Old Granary burial ground, where some of the victims of the Boston massacre are buried, plus the parents of Benjamin Franklin and other famous Americans. James Otis, John Hancock,Peter Fanieil and Paul Revere. People I had never heard of before, but who played a big part in the Independence of America. This I learned during my visit to New England.
Across the street I noticed this very interesting architecture.
I passed Old City hall
..and learned about the Democratic donkey
I got as far as the Old State house, where I stopped and took a tour around. I learned more Boston history in this lovely interesting building.
By now it was lunchtime, so I stopped for lunch in the Central Brasserie and had my first taste of American “customer service”!
Then , as it was raining again I hopped back on the tour bus and continued the rest of the freedom trail that way. The tour guide, driver was not as entertaining as the first guy, he just droned on in a monotone…..but I suppose some are better than others it is the luck of the draw. Just a tip, i rainy weather these buses get very full and we passed several stops where people were unable to get on. Choose a popular stop where people are likely to alight like the State House. .
I had read about the Boston Tea Party museum, which sounded like a fun place to go so I stopped off there. The cost was 22$ for seniors, which sounds a lot but I really enjoyed this experience. Excellent actors re-enact the Boston tea party, with their audience and it is really a fun way to learn the history, especially for children. We were all given a character, some of whom had lines to say. One American man got really carried away and I am sure deviated from the script. The actors were excellent and stayed in character all the way through, ad-libbing jokes as they went along.
The meeting in the State house
Storming to the ships, to throw the tea away.
Throwing the tea into the harbour.
There is goes!
The tour continued inside but photography was not allowed inside the museum
On my way back to the station I was interested to see this graffiti on a wall at the end of a lovely garden.
Later that evening my friend ans I drove back into Boston to attend the beautiful Boston Symphony hall, to hear a performance of Porgy and Bess by the Boston Symphony Orchestra and various well known opera singers plus a choir
I was so thrilled to be able to see this emotional performance by such a prestigious orchestra, Gershwin is one of my favourites.
It was a perfect end to the day.
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I haven't been to the Boston Tea Party Museum. Looks like something I may do the next time that I'm there. Not trying to jump ahead but did you go to the Isabella Gardner Museum? It's one of my favorite museums and would have been an ideal place to spend a rainy day. Wish I would have been there at the same time as you to show you around.Oh! and before I forget – I thought about you (well, Michael actually) when we were at the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe yesterday. Lots and lots of Brits were there.
Hi Mary Kay. This is the first time in about ten years we have missed the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe because we were both off in other places. You are getting to be a great little race goer aren't you!I did not go to the Isabella Gardner museum. Did not know about it. will google it. Maybe next time. Love Denise
I have loved following your adventures in the US. I wonder, does it make you see your American friends from a different perspective, now that you've visited chez nous?It's fantastic that you got to hear Porgy and Bess in the US. It really sings of America. Bises!!!
Sylvia, that is a really interesting question……I don't think it makes me see them in a different light, I think what it does do is give me an appreciation of where they are coming from ( if you will pardon the pun) I suppose their frame of reference.For example, the speed of serving the meals, clearing the tables and bringing the check is seen as "good service" to Americans whereas I found it pushy. I felt they were rushing me.I loved, loved,The US, but now I am back home I realise, I welcome the quietness, the absence of all the energy, speed and razamatazz of the US. It seemed relentless..I wonder if Europeans seem miserable and slow to Americans, ( they should go to Eastern Europe for dourness!) and I understand why Parisian ( and probably British too) reserve and politeness is seen as rudeness Yes I felt that Porgy and Bess was a coup. I am told it is only performed at one time anywhere. I don't know how true that is but I felt privileged to be hearing it in such a venue. Love Denise