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East Coast Vacation

Posted on July 26th, 2016 Filed under Galleries, Trips

For our 4th wedding anniversary, Carly and I went for an East coast tour by train from Boston to DC. Here’s a recap of some of the more notable parts of our trip.

– 4 cities over 10 days –

– 425 photos taken – 99.8 miles walked – 25 restaurants –

– 16 new beers tried – 8 lbs gained – 2 baseball games –

– 1 attempt at playing Pokémon Go –

We started in Cambridge where we walked around through MIT and Harvard. I left my camera in the hotel, but I picked it up for some site-seeing in Boston the next day.

We found a couple Cheerses. Real or fake, it’s all the same without Norm sitting behind the bar.

We’ve been told that we need to visit Fenway Park, so we heeded this advice. I’m glad we did. It’s an intimate park. It feels smaller than it is, and the fans are charged up. Every play that didn’t have a negative outcome for the Red Sox brought the stadium into a roar. The park sucks in comparison to Wrigley Field though (added in case Carly reads this).

Carly’s folks insisted that we take a duck boat tour in Boston. That was a fun way to see the city and experience the infamous Boston traffic. That is until our driver got fed up with it and drove us straight into the Charles River. It floated and we all survived. I’m going to trade in my van for one of these things.

We walked the Boston side of the Freedom Trail. There were a lot of interesting stops. The Puritan churches were neat and their gravestones have given inspiration for my own. I’m bringing back the slab with a skull and crossbones.

We relaxed at a pretentious literary pub, then watched the Home Run Derby at a place that had TVs. Next day we’re off to NYC.

Emerging topside in New York was an instant culture shock. The pedestrian traffic is unlike anything I’ve been in before, but I was surprised by how well it flows. I’m used to seeing Times Square on TV where it appears to be this pristine sprawling icon. In real life, it feels cramped, dirty and everything’s under construction. In a way, that made it more interesting.

Our friend Sean, who recently moved to the area from Colorado, showed us around a bit. He should have taken time off work to keep us on track. We probably would have actually ended up going to the Statue of Liberty instead of hopping on the wrong ferry and swinging past Lady Liberty.

Ahh.. beautiful Staten Island. It really is like in the brochures. That is to say it’s not notable given that they don’t have brochures. Even though we were here by accident, we enjoyed the break from the crowds regardless. We stopped for a quick slice of pizza. For $2ish a slice, I’m not going to find better pizza.

We came back to Manhattan, bound for the World Trade Center. Progress on the grounds is moving along nicely. It’s a beautiful complex. We went underneath for a tour of the museum.

The recount of the events of 9/11 was a sobering experience. We quickly changed that with a visit to McSorley’s Old Ale House. Their beer selection was simple: light or dark. After several rounds drinking 2×2, we met up with Sean again for dinner in Little Italy. My lobster ravioli was sublime.

The next day, we went through Central Park. It’s got nothing on Rocky Mountain National Park, but it’s still big, is rife with granite boulders, and has abundant lakes and trees.

For our Anniversary dinner, we took Sean’s advice and went to Gato, a Bobby Flay restaurant with a very misleading name. It was cool to see him walking around and actually working his restaurant. It was an especially great meal. We’re going to have to start going to more celebrity chef restaurants. Next up, trying Boyardee’s.

New York was fun, but 3 nights were plenty. I think we were both excited to move along to Philly. We hopped a train to the land of cheese steaks, rich American history, and miles of solid graffiti–probably from the same punks that broke that Liberty Bell.

Our hotel offered a free wine hour for their guests. We met Phil and Ugo this way. We ended up spending the rest of the night going around with them. As a nightcap, Phil presented us with half-gallon boots. These guys can party.

We then moved down to DC for the last leg of our trip. We met up with Carly’s brother, Cary, and his girlfriend Kerry. This family has too many similar names. Cary is a huge Nationals fan, so I’ve gotten into them by proxy. I was excited to hear they got us tickets to a game. The park doesn’t have Fenway’s character, but it’s still nice. We had some good shaded seats under the scoreboard, and they didn’t disappoint in the messy food department. This was the big 18 inning game. We ended up leaving after 10, but caught more at dinner, and then the disappointing finale back at Cary’s house.

We’ve already traveled by plane, train, boat, car, bus and bicycle. Carly had to add “trunk” to the list.

We both had already seen the national mall before this trip, but we took a quick pass through just to make sure it was still there. I’m sure not much actually changed, but there was a lot of differences from how I remembered it being in 1997.

That’s our trip. In all, we traveled through Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, DC and Virginia. I just have 6 more states to visit.

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