My birthday this year fell on a Friday. My 39th birthday….one year before I enter an entirely new decade….the fifth decade of my life. I’m getting a little panic-y just thinking about it, which is exactly what I was doing the Monday before my birthday sitting behind my desk at work.
Since I was failing miserably at accomplishing anything productive, I gave up trying and started daydreaming about going somewhere for my birthday in a shameless attempt to ostrich through this event by essentially sticking my head in the sand and LA-LA-LA distracting myself with a trip to Anywhereville, USA. Because THIRTY-NINE!!!
Long story short, I ended up flying to Boston by myself for a little four day weekend.
Me, about to board the plane
I really didn’t do much planning at all prior to arriving in Boston. To give you an idea, upon arrival I knew I could either catch a cab or ride on the trains (subway) to my hotel. I didn’t decide which until I was standing at the exit of the airport.
Some insight into my personality, I will sometimes shy away from activities or situations that take me outside of my comfort zone. I knew I was leaning towards catching a cab because it would allow me to avoid lots of people on the trains, and more importantly avoid drawing attention to myself because of the luggage I had with me. So I forced myself to use the trains. Screw you, Comfort Zone!
It took me about an hour to figure out my worries were unnecessary. I could’ve ran through the train station naked and maybe 3 people would’ve even bothered to bat an eye. No one is paying attention to me or anyone else in the city. There is no eye contact.
So I made it to my hotel. I’d chosen to stay in a small business – The Copley House – that built rooms out of brownstone apartments instead of your regular run-of-the-mill chain hotel. I loved the idea of living “like a local”.
I requested a studio room and while it was tiny and on the 3rd floor with no elevator/escalator, it was nicely renovated and a perfect size for just me. The staff were very kind and welcoming when I checked in. My one gripe was noise. There was some renovation work being done on the room across the hall when I was there, which is a temporary issue. Although, one night I knew my neighbor was just arriving by the rustle of his shopping bag. His door was right beside mine, but still.
After dropping my things off in the room, I decided to kind of roam around and see what was nearby. My hotel was in a lovely location, very near the Prudential Center which I walked through. I came across the Boston Public Library and went in to browse a little.
Roaming the streets.
You will learn that I am an incurable bookworm. When I go to a new place, I always look up the local bookstores. Boston had two that caught my eye.
I found out Trident Booksellers was near me, so I headed there for dinner. It’s a small place but with a great selection of books and gifts, as well as a little cafe. I bought a book and a few souvenirs (they had the most fantastic socks for sale!!), then ate in the cafe. The drink (pictured below) and the turkey sandwich I ordered were both outstanding! If you are ever in Boston, I would recommend a stop here.
Strawberry drink and a little reading at Trident
Day two, I started out early and stopped for breakfast at Flour Bakery & Cafe.
My actual birthday
Chocolate croissant was deee-licious!
After breakfast I traveled over to Boston Commons to stroll around.
Washington statue in the background
So here’s a little tip when taking selfies – Consider your environment. I, personally, do not. As a result, below you see a picture of me with a big smile and a horse’s ass. You’re welcome.
Next stop was Brattle Book Shop.
They have this cool open space next door where they put shelves of books.
Brattle Book Shop
As you can see, prices start at $1!! And some really great, vintage/antique books mixed in with more modern choices. Bookworm Heaven, I’m telling you!
I spent over an hour looking through these shelves and would’ve stayed longer if my arms hadn’t been full.
My book spoils
My brother texts me at some point to ask, “When are you going to Fenway Park?” as if there is no doubt whether I’ll be going or not.
“Um….I’m not.” because I hadn’t even thought about it, which seems reasonable considering I don’t baseball.
Being the always supportive and uplifting sibling he is, my brother ends the conversation with, “You don’t know what you’re doing. Ur ruining the trip. Who goes to Boston and doesn’t see Fenway?”
For my brother. Fenway.
I also took this picture of the plaque, in the place of a tour of the park. Bonus points!!
The rest of the day I went over to the harbor and sat to read. Sitting is good. When planning a trip to Boston, plan on LOTS of walking. Wear comfortable shoes. Seriously.
Day Three I scheduled a whale watching excursion. I was SO. EXCITED!!!
Leaving the harbor
Boston from the water
Pictures. When I tell you I was excited so I took pictures what I really mean is I was like a kid in a candy shop and I just kept snapping with no idea what I was getting or not getting.
The good side of that is when I uploaded my pictures to Google, they turned them into mini animations, so below….WHALES!!!
These first two are fin whales.
After visiting the fin whales we headed over near Cape Cod where there were young humpbacks. By this time you can tell it’s not as bright out. The sun had gone behind the clouds and it was FREEZING!!
I did visit a market down near the harbor after the whale excursion, but unfortunately didn’t take any pictures of it.
The next day I traveled back to the airport – on the trains! – and headed home.
Overall it was a wonderful birthday! Happy 39th to me!!
Have you been to Boston? Leave a comment! Let me know you’re here!!