Wednesday, September 16, 2015


Well....we made it! We're here in Beantown (uhm, WHY do they call it "Beantown"? I guess I could do an internet search but I'm just too lazy right now).

Got to the hotel, unloaded our stuff and went out in search of dinner. We went HERE:

Yep....this is the "original" Cheers...the one that was the inspiration for the TV series (the sign on the street and the stairs down look the same to me, but that's about it). The OTHER Cheers in Boston is a replica of the TV show set. Anyway....we had beers and a meal (Jeannie had a Oriental Chicken salad, and I had the fish and chips). Total bill: $ FIFTY DOLLARS!!! (the beer was Sam Adams btw). OK...THAT was a bit pricey...and the food wasn't even very good. Quite honestly, I'd recommend you DO NOT eat there...get your picture, have a beer ($7 EACH) if you MUST, then go about anywhere else (we walked past more than a few Pubs that all looked promising on our way there). Oh and learn. One more tidbit: they have a gift-shop....I really planned on getting a Cheers T-shirt. Yeah....they're $30 EACH. Didn't happen. We'd already been robbed. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

That's about it for today (Wednesday)...I'll simply make updates to this post as the next few days here progress. We fly to Munich on Saturday evening and will open a new post then. Have a great day at work! (Bwa-ha-ha-ha...insert my best internet evil-laugh here). I LOVE VACATION!

UPDATE: Saturday 9/19
Wow...these last 2 days have FLOWN by!  We are having a leisurely morning in the room (and I'm doing laundry so we fly with all clean clothes for our start in Munich). The concierege lounge here in the Marriott is closed on weekends (rats!) we've now used up all the coffee in the room, plus an extra I scored from housekeeping. Jeannie is getting ready, laundry is in the dryer, and I'm STARVED! I already scarfed down my half of a little Boston Creme Pie (from the Omni/Parker Hotel...which invented Boston Creme Pie btw)...ahh...DELICIOUS with my 1st cup of coffee! We have a late checkout for 6pm (had to pay a bit extra, but we don't get pushed to the curb at 1pm that way). We can shower and change into travel clothes, take a cab to the airport right around 6pm, and we fly around 8:50pm tonight....the lovely redeye!

ANYWAY....we did the entire Freedom Trail over the last 2's a few miles of walking, and our weather was AWESOME! Mid 80's....on the verge of hot, but MUCH better than cold IMO.

 During our tour of the first part of the Freedom Trail...this is our guide Tom, 
and we are at the tomb of Paul Revere.

 The original government building, this was also the site of the infamous Boston Massacre.

 Having some "chowda". MMMMMMM! Ya gotta have chowda here in Boston!

 Paul Revere's house. We toured inside...he had 16 kids with 2 wives! 

 Inside the Old North Church. Instead of Pews, there are "Box Pews" 
which were bought or rented by the parishioners. The climb to the steeple is up behind the pipe organs (which was done in total darkness the night of April 18th, 1775 by Mr. Seward, who put up 2 lanterns signifying the British Army was on the move by water instead of land, setting Paul Revere (and 31 others) off on the famous ride to warn the colonists in Lexington and Concord.

 The outside view of the Old North Church. That is THE steeple where the lanterns were hung (for about a minute only) sending the warning to the waiting riders.

Now we are across the Charles River (roughly where Paul Revere and the other riders took off from) at Drydock Number 1, and this is the oldest Comissioned US Navy Ship, the USS Constitution, ie Old Ironsides herself. As you can see, she is NOT open for tours at this time, darn it! Just my luck!

 Up on top of Breeds Hill, the site of the famous "Battle of Bunker Hill", June 17th, 1775. This is the monument to the brave souls who fought and died here after standing up to the British "regulars" (army) . Over 400 colonists were killed or injured, and over 1100 British shared the same fate. The British officially won the day and took the hill, but it was at GREAT cost as they lost almost half of their forces doing it, and the colonial Militia lost about a third. This was the first major skirmish of the Revolutionary war. That's me standing at the top of the stairs just to the right of the statue. We climbed to the top of the monument inside, via 284 circular stairs! There's a little room at the top with a small window on each side with awesome views!

 Looking back across the Charles River, by my head you can see the Old North Church sticking up through the trees (likely the trees weren't there back then).

 Here we are looking north over the Charles River at the Bunker Hill monument and Charles Town.

Our Friday evening dinner, at the Island Creek Oyster and Raw Bar. The seafood was FANTASTIC!!! However I totally forgot to take pictures of that. Jeannie had the Halibut, and I had Tautog (I'd never heard of it before, but trust me, it was DELICIOUS!) After dinner we wandered around and ended up having a few beers at Henesseys Irish Pub (voted the BEST Irish Pub in Boston 6 years in a row). Jeannie had Samuel Adams, but I had a wonderful DogFishHead Brown Ale!

And FINALLY! Saturday morning as we began our last day of wandering, there was a local Crit race right smack in the downtown! We watched a few laps as we moseyed along the fencing, and you can see the old Government building just behind the riders! The laps must have been pretty short as they came by every few minutes really flying! All in all we had a GREAT TIME here in Boston, and are already looking forward to coming back again one-day! As for now, we are packing up and getting ready to head to the airport for our redeye to Munich. 

This has been your mobile reporter, signing off from Boston!


  1. That Sam Adams is looking pretty good; and I'm not into beer;-) Have a great time at Octoberfest and be sure to have a beer for me!! CRC

  2. I meant to wish you 'Happy Vacation!" on Monday but I was trying to get thru a bunch of work stuff before my "vacation day" of Wednesday - I stayed home to watch painters repair & paint my house's window trim & doors. I'd put if off the last 3 years & had to get it done this year before the weather got too cold. Looks good but I discovered I have some electrical outlet problems now! Crap, fix one thing & then it's something else. Argh.

    Anyhooo, hope you & Jeannie have a GREAT time at Octoberfest! And any photos & write-ups you post will be MUCH appreciated!

    Will you be DVRing the cycling World Championships while you're away? Since they're in the USA, ALL (!) of the events will be broadcast either on NBC, NBCSN, CNBC & Universal Sports. Unfortunately, many of our faves won't even be there due to injuries or illness (Cav, Spartacus, Tejay, etc).

    BTW, I loved those pics of Sophie on the previous post. SO cute! And she's sounds like a hoot! :)

    "Beantown" - because of Boston's famous baked beans? :) I plan to take a fall foliage bus tour of New England ONE of these years & hope to see many of the Boston/Revolutionary historical sites then. Of course, I've been "planning" that trip for more than 25 years & it hasn't happened yet. Sigh. The 1st trip I will do will be my long-planned Italy tour & the earliest that will happen is 2018. I've been saving for the past 3 years but it's at the bottom of my other savings goals so sometimes I miss it. (ROTH 1st, then other stock investments, then for Emergency fund, then for next car, & THEN money for travel). Do you allocate savings like that? I've done it for decades, but some years I don't save at all for certain areas.

    The CHEERS food/prices reminds me of the rip-off that was Planet Hollywood. I think all the locations shut down years ago, but it was such a tourist-cheat & I unfortunately stood in line for HOURS the year it 1st opened in NYC on 57th street & then later ate at the Washington version twice. (The last time was because my younger sister just HAD to go). The food was either mediocre or awful each time. And I unfortunately wasted even when I ate there! (Where I, er, spent MORE money on t-shirts at the NYC, Washington & London establishments. Yes, I am an idiot. ;)

    Anyhoo, have a blast on vacation! And don't forget about us poooooor working stiffs. :)

    1. Hey Susie....yes, if it's not one thing, it's another (famous words of Rosanna Rosadana). No, not even bothering to DVR the will all be over when I get home and I'll likely know the results...watching bike races after you know who won is hard.

      Had I NOT had dinner in Cheers I'd have bought a T shirt (wish that was what we did)...but after eating their pathetic food, I couldn't make myself buy a $30 T shirt. They already got enough of my $$. Never did Planet Hollywood (wasn't that the one owned/part owned by Sylvester Stallone?)

  3. Hmmm, my post disappeared again when I tried to "publish" & even though I had copied it 1st to my outlook, when I copied it back, it missed some of the last 2 paragraphs! Let's see, the sentence that began - "And I unfortunately I wasted even" was to continue with - "more money as I bought t-shirts & other tourist crap. At least the Hard Rock Cafes had good hamburgers! (Where I, etc"

    Weird. Well, it's Friday. :) :)

  4. Happy travels, Matt! I can sympathize with feeling taken by the 'Cheers' place. I try to stay away from any gimmicky eateries having learned my lesson may moons ago. I think the only exception was when we had breakfast at this famous deli on Times Square -- the food was good, and the portions enormous ( and total calorie bombs too). We had various blintzes, yummy!

    Here's hoping your flight is a smooth one and you have little jet-lag!

    Well I am in Richmond VA after a VERY long drive (Bing lied to me, said the drive was 6.5 hours or so in light traffic -- but even though after leaving the Columbus metro area there was pretty much NO traffic, especially in West VA (great roads and nobody on them), it still took close to NINE hours. I was dying from fatigue!

    But I managed to get out and see some of the time trial training. Actually, just as I was leaving the hotel (in Midlothian, about 10 miles out from Richmond proper and farther than that from Downtown) the Cannondale Garmin team crossed in front of me -- must have been at the TTT practice, but where they were on the way to I haven't a clue. They weren't headed toward any hotel nearby as far as I could see. And, behind them was a driver who seemingly didn't appreciate having a bunch of cyclists in front of him -- he was laying on the horn! I hope no one gets hurt while here for the Worlds at the hands of an impatient or angry driver!

    I've never been here before and it is almost feels like "you can't get there from here" with all the road closings. The streets around the course were packed with cars for blocks and blocks around -- from spectators but mostly from residents I think. I finally found a parking spot, at least a mile away from the course. Now I want to go to the start of the course tomorrow, but I am not sure just yet where it is -- one page says it is the same as the ITT, another shows much different and farther away start location. And the shuttles don't seem to take people to the start area. I hope I figure it out before the start of the women's race.

    I am at a real disadvantage watching riders in person -- I recognize hardly anyone! I do believe I spotted Rohan Dennis working very hard on the course; and I definitely spotted Kristin Armstrong (hope she will win!) But NONE of my attempts to photo the riders as they went by turned out. Hope I do better for the actual race tomorrow. The German team passed me several times en masse and I tried to spot Tony Martin but never did. I hadn't actually had a chance yet to find a list of each team's riders so I didn't even know who I might be looking for in most cases.

    Kind of funny to overhear the comments of people who came to the practices. Clearly most are interested in the proceedings but have no idea about the sport, or the event itself. Stuff like: "why are they going past us so many times?" "Hey, those guys are from France!" "What's Norge?" "This isn't what I thought it would be!" But, at least they know about it.. Back home, there has been virtually no mention of this event in the media.

    And SO many people brought their dogs. I hope that tomorrow, when the crowds (hopefully) are bigger, they will be left at home. Two got into a spat next to me -- brief, but startling! The course is well barriered, though, so at least we don't have to worry about them (and spectators) stepping out into the course right of way. The time I worked as course marshal at the Tour of CA I had to remind several people (more than once!) to keep their dogs on a short leash and away from the curb.


  5. Hey Rae...have fun in Richmond! I know downtown where my sis-in-law lives (just a few blocks from the Museum where she works) it's all 'city life' parking/ garages and the streets are jammed (she doesn't even have a car). When we were there last I was sometimes parking our rental a few blocks away...crazy life and not my cup of tea...but fun to visit for a while. I'll be peeking in at Velo News to see the haps...hope your weather is good and the races go off without a hitch!