Sunday, June 28, 2015

Maine & Boston 2015 {Day Six}

Day Six was really only about a half day in Boston, but the government geek in me knew there was only one place I could spend it...

I do love a Presidential Library!

After a brief film, the exhibits proceed in chronological order.  

I want to bring back some campaign elements of bygone years...specifically dresses for a candidate and campaign songs.

Some buttons, which I thought photograph worthy due to the pre-26th Amendment button.

The set up of the Kennedy/Nixon debate.  This was the first televised debate in Presidential elections.
I always love a first ladies dress...
The President's rocking chair
Because of a high school tour group which was driving me nuts, I didn't get any other pics of the exhibits.
Looking out the windows toward the President's boat.

I braved the elements (wind, rain, cold) to go out and get some pics.

 I didn't have a ton of time left, but my next stop was just next door.  
The new Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.

This is NOT a museum, but instead is a tool to educate people about the US Senate.  The technology is state of the art.  Every person who enters gets an iPad to use throughout the institute because it's all interactive.  I didn't have time to fully participate, but I tell you that I think it is the greatest thing I've ever seen.  The opportunity to use this to educate school kids (and adults) about the US Senate is phenomenal.  I seriously can just tear up thinking about it.

The only "museum" like element is that they have recreated Senator Kennedy's office.  Everything is exactly as it was on the day he passed away.

This is the outer office, which was covered in paintings that Senator Kennedy had painted himself.

The "BIG" thing in the institute is the exact replica of the Senate chamber.  It is exact with the exception of a few things:  The big computer screen up front, the desks at the front aren't raised to be ADA compliant, and the seal of the senate is not on the ceiling like it is in D.C.

Here, a group of school kids are about to vote on legislation after debating it.
Regardless of what you think of Senator Kennedy, I think this is an amazing tribute to the life of someone who spent so many years in the Senate. 

It was time to head to the airport for my flight back to Texas.  As always, I was sad to be leaving, but happy to be seeing the pup soon.  I got to the airport early, so I had time for a proper lunch at Legal Seafood.  Lobster Bisque and a Crab & Avacado Salad.

The pup was at home to greet me!
(Pictured with her souvenir)

oh, and those cupcakes I brought home...
I don't think I should get a job as a cupcake transporter anytime soon!  I'm not sure if they got this jostled from the cupcake place to the hotel before I froze them, or if they got this way during the airport shuffle.  Oh well, they don't need to be pretty to taste good!  I froze them for months of treats to come!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Boston & Maine 2015 {Day Five}

I woke up on Monday with plans to see as much of Boston as possible. It was really raining hard when I left the hotel, so instead of walking to catch public transportation, I hopped right into the nice dry cab that was waiting outside of the hotel.  I had him drive me down to the Harbor area where the Old Town Trolley tours leave from.  It takes a little over 2 hours to make the entire loop, so I decided to do that while it was raining.  I have done Old Town Trolley tours in other cities, and I think it is really good.  You really do get to see a lot from the Trolley, and the tour guides seem pretty knowledgeable.  Once the tour was over, I made my way over the the Legal Sea Foods at the Harbor. 

I had a great luch of shrimp, scallops, and a crab cake.

Then I set out walking toward Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market.  I missed a turn for FH, so I ended up at the Old State House. 
Then as I made my way to FH and Quincy Market, I encountered a parade.

After watching the parade for a few minutes, I made my way to Faneuil Hall.

It was so darn cold.  The high that day was 46', it was raining on and off at this point, and was WINDY.  I had to get a chai tea latte at the Starbucks inside the FH to warm up!

I did a little shopping inside Quincy Market, including purchasing my Boston ornament for my Travel Christmas Tree.  I settled on the Fenway Park ornament since I was staying down near Fenway, and also had Sox tickets for the game that evening.
After I shopped, I took the trolley to their #2 stop, and walked to Paul Revere's House.

From here, I picked up the The Freedom Trail/

Next stop was The Old North Church

One if by land, two if by sea

At this point, I turned and went backward through The Freedom Trail.  This next church isn't really part of TFT, but I thought it was interesting because of the Kennedy ties.

Since I was going backwards, I went back by Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market, and the Old State House again.

Next stop on the trail was the Old South Meeting House.

This was across the street from the Old South Meeting House.  Does it not look like TFT was leading right into Chipotle? 
The trail took you past Old City Hall and a statue of Ben Franklin.

Next stop was the Granary Burying Ground.
Among those buried here, Sam Adams.

This is not the grave of anyone famous, but it is really old, and I liked the carving.
I walked on to Boston Common...
Then the Massachusetts State House

Next up was Boston Public Garden, which I loved.
I love these purple flowers.  I'm not sure what they are called, but I think they look like they could be in a Dr. Seuss book. 
This is the famous "Make Way for the Ducklings" statue...
I think this pic looks like the mama duck is not all that pleased with me

A statue of Washington
At this point, I left the garden and walked down Newbury Street, which is the high end shopping street.  This was really my last thing I had to do for the day before heading back to the hotel to get ready for the Sox game.  I wasn't in for much shopping, but was headed to the Georgetown Cupcake shop that is located there!  As I walked up to GC, I got an email saying that the Sox game was cancelled!  It was rescheduled for another afternoon that week.  I was totally bummed...Another cancelled event that I was really looking forward to!
I bought so many cupcakes they had to double bag them.  They went straight into my hotel room's freezer, and I brought them home and froze them so I could enjoy them for months to come.  I also gave one of the cupcake girls my Sox ticket.
I walked all the way back to the hotel, which led me right past Fenway Park.

I got back to the hotel and was so cold, I took a shower to warm up.  I then decided to just be boring again, and headed back to the Yard House (that Cider is amazing I'm telling ya), and headed back to the movie theatre to see "Pitch Perfect 2".  At the time I made this pic collage, I had walked a lot, but it ended up being 19,677 steps (8.72 miles) for the day...
and I was tired!

Stay tuned for Day 6 of the trip... I only had 1/2 day left in Boston!


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