Ten Things Tuesday – October 26

26 Oct

Killing two birds with one stone today. I’m recounting my Boston adventures in the form of a TTT list. Enjoy!

1. I drove down to Melody’s house after work on Thursday. After such a crazy day at work – I literally did not stop moving the entire day – I was definitely ready to just sit down and RELAX for a bit! My mom was nice enough to make me a sandwich to eat on my drive down, which was delicious after a long day. Melody and I ventured out to Mexico Lindo – now under a different name, apparently – for a second dinner. We didn’t stay up very late, because I had to wake up at 3:30 in the morning! That’s right. I said 3:30, which is a very small number. But that’s the price you pay for a very cheap airline ticket ($98 roundtrip? Heck YES!). So anyway, I napped for a few hours, got up in the wee hours of the morning, loaded my stuff in the car, and drove off to Charlotte. I got there with plenty of time and was off to my stop in Newark.

2. I was amazed at how many amazing stores there were in the Newark airport, which makes me sound very small-town, I’m sure. But they had the most amazing selection of souvenir shops – even a Metropolitan Museum of Art store! I was so tempted to buy something in there, but unfortunately they didn’t have the Klimt-print scarf I really want. I must have looked around their store for a good 30 minutes, waiting on my second flight. During my layover, I also had a pretzel-covered hot dog. For breakfast. I mean, it was like 10 in the morning, but I’d already been up for over 6 hours. It was way more like lunch to me, anyway. The other amazing thing about Newark is that you can sit at the airport gates and see the Empire State Building. Yes, I know it’s literally across the water from New York, but I guess I just thought it was further. Or something like that. Anyway, I felt like I was spending my morning in New York – we even flew over the Statue of Liberty and Central Park. Very, very cool.

3. The flight from Newark to Boston is short – about 40 minutes. Just enough time for me to get in a little reading and peruse the SkyMall catalogue. I don’t know why, but I love looking at that stuff. Most of it you’re just like, “Really? Why does anyone need this many gadgets?” But some of the time, you can find some great gift ideas. I’ve already found something perfect for Melody’s Christmas present… So once I got to Boston, I bought a T (subway) ticket and hopped on the train to Cambridge. It’s about an hour from the airport, so plenty of time for me to see some of the city and figure out where the heck I was going once I got off the transit. I have excellent navigation and spatial skills, so I wasn’t ever lost. Katy had sent me directions to her apartment, so I had no trouble finding it on my own. On my train ride out of the city, I did a litte catch-up reading in Paul is Undead (which, I have to admit, I saved for this specific trip, hoping to start conversations with strangers). It worked, totally. Several people on the train from the airport asked me about it. I wish I’d been more eloquent about it, but I think my enthusiasm wore off. I’m glad to share this special knowledge with others, both near and far.

4. Like I said before, finding Katy’s apartment was no trouble. It was quite windy once I got out from underground, but that of course didn’t stop me. The neighborhood is so cute – very New England-y and homey. Katy still had a couple of hours at her internship that afternoon, so I hung around and talked to her roommates while we waited for her. They both seem really cool – Jen is from western Massachusetts, and Kendall is from Virginia. They all see very different from each other, but get along well. They’re both students with Katy in the art therapy program, so we all had that in common. It was nice to be able to talk to them about their experience and their classes, coming from the same background. It’s been so long since I’ve been in that “art therapy world” that it was nice to get back into it for a while. Their apartment is just adorable – exactly what you’d want to be living in during grad school. Katy’s room is very bohemian and colorful and eclectic – exactly what you’d expect it to look like. Even though I love my own room, I’m slightly jealous. When I first got there, a new window was being installed in the bathroom, to replace the apparently old one letting in cold air. This was a huge help, because it was COLD up there! They spent most of the weekend trying to get the radiators turned on, which they finally succeeded in doing on Sunday. When Katy got home, she was so excited to see me, and gave me the tightest hug I think I’ve ever gotten! It was so great to see her after so long – we hadn’t seen each other since graduation! She took me to an early dinner at one of her favorite places – O’Sullivan’s, for some of the biggest, most incredible burgers anywhere. Seriously, I don’t know how I fit that in my mouth (that’s what she said!). The burger was so delicious, and along with the enormous fries and tasty onion rings was just the thing I needed to prepare myself for the cold New England night. Living somewhere with amazing restaurants all the time definitely has its advantages…

5. After dinner at O’Sullivan’s, we headed back to the apartment to get ready for an Art and Wine party that one of Katy’s friends was having. It’s apparently a regular thing they do on the weekends, and that suited me just fine. On our way back to the apartment we stopped at a grocery store so Katy could get some ingredients for crostini, which ended up being delicious. When we left the apartment again for the party, Jen and Kendall in tow, we stopped by a different store to pick up some wine. Mine and Katy’s choices ended up being very popular, because our bottles were empty before we left! (Mine was, of course, albarino.) The art and wine party was fun – we basically sat around drinking wine and eating litte appetizers, which of course I was too full to really appreciate, and doing art. Katy’s friend, Bethany, whose house we were at, had laid out a sheet and various art supplies in the living room, so we basically had an art picnic. Katy and her roommates had all brought some supplies and things they’d been working on. It was so nice to just relax and work on something creative. It’s been so long since I’ve done that! I’ve seriously got to get back into the groove of making art again, if just for the sake of keeping my sanity! One of the girls that lived in the apartment has a dog – a little white chihuahua, named Potato. Why he’s named that, I have no idea. But it was really funny to hear everyone talking to a Potato. So random. Everyone at the party was a student in the art therapy program I really enjoyed getting to meet all of them and see how Katy has fit into that dynamic up there. She really seems to be loving it. Because I’d had a long day of traveling, we didn’t stay out too late. It was freezing on the way home, which woke me up a little bit. It was so nice to get into Katy’s warm bed and sleep for an entire night.

6. The next morning, we laid around and had kind of a lazy start to the day. Jen woke up about the same time we did, and offered to make pancakes for breakfast. Katy had some eggs and some delicious Portuguese sausage, the name of which escapes me at the moment, so that rounded out a delicious breakfast. Oh, did I mention we had REAL maply syrup, from actual Vermont, with our pancakes? Yeah, New Englanders don’t mess around with that stuff. No Log Cabin or Mrs. Butterworth’s for them! You can’t get much better than the real stuff. After our leisurely breakfast, Katy and I got ready for my surprise. I still had no clue what we were doing, but I was of course up for anything. We went into the city, and all the way down to the harbor. Because, surprise! We were taking the ferry up to Salem…as in witch trials. The hour-long ferry ride was gorgeous – we stayed inside, though, out of the wind! It was a nice view of the harbor and the city skyline. One of the crew members gave a little tour and historical info about the stuff we were passing on shore, which Katy said doesn’t usually happen. It was neat to hear about the lighthouses and all the extremely wealthy suburbs we were passing. Actually being in Salem was amazing. Every October, apparently, they have a big Halloween festival on the weekends, where people dress up in costumes and local vendors sell food and homemade goods. It was really a lot of fun. There weren’t tons of vendors out that day – Katy said it must be an off-weekend, but there were tons of people walking around in costumes! Apparently it’s too dangerous for the kids up there to actually trick-or-treat on Halloween, so they do it the weekend before. We saw plenty of that going on, as well as the hordes of people walking through the graveyard where all the hanged witches are buried. It was such an eerie feeling being up there. But what’s Halloween without a little creepiness? Salem was also amazing because of the shopping. There are tons of little shops up there, so we window-shopped for a while. We went into one vintage store, Modern Millie, that was just adorable. I walked out of there with two of the most fabulous purchases ever – a vintage coral necklace that is just gorgeous, and a vintage mink stole. Yep. You heard me. Vintage. Mink. Stole. I didn’t intend to get it, but it was just calling me from the rack where it was hung nonchalantly with a dress. I put it on and just walked around the store with it, stroking the soft fur covering my arms and shielding me from the cold. I didn’t take it off, so I pretty much knew at that point it was coming home with me. I don’t know what I was thinking, because I have absolutely nowhere to wear it at the moment. But should I ever be invited somewhere super fancy, I’m ready. Not to mention it might look amazing in bridal portraits one day…definitely my something old! Needless to say, Salem was a huge hit. Definitely a good call on that one, Katy!

7. The other part of our Salem trip that was so amazing truly deserved its own item on this list. Our dinner that night was without a doubt what I want to eat as my dying meal. We went down the street to this loca pub, called In a Pig’s Eye, which is a pretty well-known establishment in Salem. We had to wait a little bit – we got there right as it got busy for dinner, so we timed it well. We were waiting for a table, but then snatched up two seats at the bar when those people finally got their table. We got really lucky – we didn’t have lots of time before we had to catch our return ferry to the city! We were luckily able to order at the bar. I ordered my go-to, Blue Moon, which never disappoints. For dinner, I had the baked scallops with green beans and roasted red potatoes. Oh. My. God. I cannot describe in the least just how amazing this was. Seriously, if I could, I’d never eat anything else in my life. The scallops were huge – bigger than any I’ve ever had before. And so juicy and tender. Definitely fresh, not at all frozen. The green beans were so crunchy and good. And the potatoes. Oh man. I don’t know what they put on them, but they were soooooo good! Whatever blend of butter and spices they used is a definite winner. I’m drooling just thinking about it. Take my word for it, should you ever find yourself in Salem on a chilly fall night, or at any point, really, order the scallops. They won’t disappoint you. And bring me some back, while you’re at it. Hands down the best thing I ever ate. Ever.

8. Our eventful day in Salem definitely set the bar for the rest of the trip. Luckily, it was just as fun. We spent the day walking around Cambridge and shopping at the loca stores. We had breakfast at a really good bakery, called Rosie’s, where we stuffed ourselves with cinnamon rolls, omelette sandwiches, and a delicious brownie concoction called a chocolate orgasm. The name pretty much says it all. Of course Katy knew all the really fun stores to take me it. We went to a cute little store that sells just socks, tights, and shoes. There’s nothing like fun, cute socks to make you feel fun and cheery on a gloomy day. I bought several pairs, including one of yellow, green, and purple yarn for my mom. There were several other boutiques in the area that we wandered into. I love looking through those unique gift stores and finding ideas for gifts, both for myself and for others. One of my favorite stores, and Katy’s, is a store called Nomad that sells lots of eclectic things. They have very expensive but gorgeous clothes, jewelry of every metal and stone, scarves in every color, knick knacks and mirrors and frames, mittens and books and candles. It was like a treasure trove. I don’t know how I managed to walk out of there with my wallet mostly intact… Another great store was Paper Source. I wish we had one here, because they are far superior to anything Michael’s could ever remotely dream of becoming. They have paper of all colors and patterns, and tons of stamps, embossing powders, stickers, and other various gifts. I bought myself a cute little “L” shaped seal, along with some red and gold sealing wax. From now on, all my letters will be sealed this way. My only two requests of the entire trip were to hit up Anthropologie and H&M. We only made it as far as Anthro, because we just ran out of time! We ended the day about an hour away from H&M, so by the time we made it down there, they would have been closing. No big deal, though. I definitely don’t feel cheated, because in the meantime I made some excellent discoveries of my own. Anthropologie, of course, did not disappoint. And it was made even better by the fact that I had brought my little birthday discount, to take even more off my pretty sale items. I really hit it right on that one.

9. Katy took me up to see where she has classes at Lesley during our shopping excursion. It was so fun to see where she spends so much of her days. We initally went in to use the bathroom and escape the light rain that lasted just a few minutes. Their studio space looks really cool. It definitely made me want to get back there myself!

10. I’m pretty sure we would have shopped the entire day, had it not been for the fact that the stores eventually had to close, and we were meeting Katy’s roommates for dinner at their favorite dive bar. It’s their weekend tradition, be it Saturday or Sunday, to hang out at Newtowne and watch football games. In true Southern form, Katy prefers college football, while Jen, a tried-and-true New Englander, loves the NFL. They find a happy medium in the fact they’re drinking beer and eating bar food. I had some amazing lobster mac and cheese for dinner that night. I also picked at some of Jen’s leftover nachos, and tried a mozzarella stick Katy saved me. Really, how can you go wrong with these things? I’m going to try to come up with my own version of lobster mac and cheese, because it was delicious. Carbs. Cheese. Seafood. What more could you ask for? It was a highly successful day. I found lots of goodies while shopping (look for them tomorrow!), ate delicious food, sat around with some good people, and the Patriots, Jen’s favorite team, won their game. The perfect end to a great trip. Too bad I couldn’t stay longer!

So as you can see from what is without a doubt the longest TTT list or post in general of my career, I had a wonderful time. The food was amazing, the company superb, the shopping excellent. It was hard to drag myself out of bed and to the airport yesterday morning. Of course, Katy came with me to send me off, which was so nice of her! I’ll really miss her. We need to plan our next trip to see Stacy in Santa Fe now! I just need to make a career out of traveling around the country. Wouldn’t that be nice?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: