The bus from NY brought us to South Station pretty late. We grabbed some midnight burritos from Boloco and called it a night at the Midtown Hotel near Prudential.
The next day we went around the city seeing sights as it dumped snow on us. The weather slowed us down a bit, as I kept bringing us in places to warm up and thaw out my wet feet, but we still saw a lot in our unorganized wanderings. There was also the conflict of what I thought was the best of Boston based on my five years at Northeastern and what my library-loaned Fodor’s book convinced Daniele was the best. We managed to make it to the Prudential Center, Copley Square, Newbery Street, Boston Common, the Old and New State Houses, Faneuil Hall, North End, water front, Charlestown Bridge, and China Town. I took few pictures because it was snowing so hard they would not have come out well and I had taken some nice pictures in the summer when I was there last time.
We had lunch while we were in the North End. Daniele picked out one of the dozens of Italian places along Hanover and Salem streets. We went to one on Salem where the parents had started it and the son runs it now; the sisters have a place down the street. Daniele said he really wanted carbonara, but didn’t trust any place in the US to make it, but after we ate he was impressed with the food and wished he had gotten it. Although what they gave him was apparently called something different than what they called it. Oops. We went to Mike’s Pastry for dessert where I had hyped up the cannoli as better than Italy. It was a slow Friday afternoon and the ladies made friends when they heard us speaking Italian to each other. Anyone who has ever dealt with these business-only fast-dealing take-the-cash-and-give-the-pastry ladies understands how remarkable it is even on a slow day for them to make small talk with a customer. We chatted in Italian a bit. Talked about who looks Italian, how long those born in Italy had been in Boston, where everyone was from and how I had to visit there. I swear it really happened!
That night we took the train out to Sharon to stay with Alison and Tom. We made a creamy baked gnocchi dish by Giada de Laurentis [http://reservationsnotrequired.blogspot.com/2008/10/baked-gnocchi.html] for dinner then watched The Social Network. The next day they took us to the Massachusetts coast. We had lunch in a clam shack in Essex where we made Daniele eat New England Clam Chowder. We also went to Rockport and Gloucester where it was really pretty even in the winter. In the evening Rebbecca met up with us and we had Tex Mex (and too many margaritas) in Cambridge followed by scorpion bowls at Hong Kong followed by dancing at An Tua Nua.
Kevin and Andrea picked us up the next morning. We had lunch together at a mexican place and drove around the neighborhoods surrounding Boston a little. On a whim, we got sleds and went sledding. It was super fun. We recovered with a cheddar cheese snack. Then ate dinner in a nice place in Arlington.
The last morning was very, very cold. The kind of cold day in Boston where not wearing a hat is suicide and you think your eyes might freeze in their sockets. We had breakfast at Flour Bakery and headed back to NJ to get ready for Costa Rica.
[Edit] Link to Boston photos from this trip:
Some pictures of Boston when it is not covered in snow: