No Harm Done

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Bahstun- Paht Two

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love accents. I love listening to them. I love trying to imitate them. I love pointing out other people's accents, though they don't usually like that so much. Today was filled with accents and languages that added color and charm to our trip.

We spent Saturday on a bus tour of Boston. The hotel recommended this 7 hour tour, and we had a wondeful time. We were able to visit all the sites we'd wanted to see, and didn't have to worry about parking.

The driver had a wonderful Boston accent, and his voice sounded very familiar. I spent a lot of time listening to him and trying to place the voice - a bit like Click and Clack on "CarTalk" (NPR), but not quite. It wasn't until the end of the tour that it hit me: our tour guide sounded just like George Carlin, only without all the anger and bitterness. I know, I know, Carlin wasn't from Boston. But our tour guide still sounded like him.

We began the day by driving through the southern areas of Boston, and stopping at Longfellow's House in Cambridge.
We met the rest of our group there. There were 15 of us on the bus, and 7 members of our group were from Germany. As we drove, one of the group translated the information into German for the rest. It was fantastic! I even got to try out some of my German, which pretty much consists of the words "bitte," "danke," and "farvegnugen."
We spent an hour exploring the Charlestown Navy Yard. We were able to board the USS Constitution, the oldest comissioned ship in the navy. Twice a year they take it out onto the open water and sail her around a bit.

Look at those cannons!

Next we visited the USS Cassin Young, a World War 2 era destroyer. We could walk around the deck of the ship, and explore inside a bit. By this time it had started raining and was really cold. We explored the destroyer, and then made our way back to the shipyard museum.
From the shipyard we drove over the hill to the Bunker Hill Monument on Breed's Hill.

The hill was not at all how I'd pictured it. For instance, it's really not much of a hill. It's more of a swell in the road. The city has grown up around it. But when you look at artwork inside the monument, you can see what it looked like before the city encroached on that area. It is sobering to walk on that hill and think of all the men and boys who lost their lives in that first battle.
The monument was built in the early 1800s, and visitors can walk the 294 steps to the top, and look out over the city. Here's a picture of the monument:

M. walked all the way up to the top, while I explored the Bunker Hill Museum and Gift Shop. M. says that the view from the top was worth the climb, but tonight he's still walking like an elderly man needing a hip replacement. Poor guy!
There were rows and rows of this style of housing. Very cool!

We stopped for lunch at Quincy Market, and ran into this colonist talking on his cell phone. He wasn't supposed to be doing that, and tried to put his phone away, but when he saw that I wanted a picture with him on his phone, he was more than happy to continue his conversation.

At Quincy Market, we bought fish and chips (Boston Scrod), and ate outside watching all the people in the market. I enjoyed listening to the people who work in the market. Everyone was all upset about last night's Sox game. They had the lead the whole game, but then lost to the Yankees near the end of the game.

On our lunch break, we wandered through the North End and into "Little Italy." It is a beautiful part of town!

We wandered through the North End in order to find Paul Revere's House. Look! It's Paul Revere's HOUSE! How cool is that?!

They wouldn't allow photography inside, so all we get to see is a picture of the exterior. The house was built in 1660 (ish) and was already 100 years old when Paul Revere bought it!
Here's the Old North Church, where the lanterns were hung signaling whether the British were coming by land or by sea. The Old North Church is still a functioning Episcopal Church today. They open it for tourists during the week. Underneath the church, over 1000 people are buried. Years ago, the Puritans gave the Anglicans the land for this church, but wouldn't give them any land for cemetaries. So they buried their dead underneath the church.
The next two pictures are for Brogan. Remember the book "Make Way for Ducklings?" You liked it so much, that we had to read it every time we set foot in a bookstore or saw it in the library. Finally we bought our own copy.
Well, the book was set in the Boston Public Gardens. Here is a picture looking into the Gardens:
And here are statues of the mama duck and her ducklings inside the park! I wish you were here so you could see them, and sit on a bench in the garden and read the book with me.
Tomorrow we visit Plimoth Plantation and Cape Cod!


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