Road Trip: New England

Day 10: Tuesday, May 03, 2022 - Boston, MA

Day's statistics:
Weather: Light rain
Steps: Steve 7,990; Linda 7,547
Drove: 374 miles

Breakfast was an untoasted bagel with cream cheese.
Other than the Mind Games hotel, this was the only other hotel we stayed at for more than one night. So we didn't pack the car, we didn't check-out, but we did head out to visit the city.

Due to the last minute booking, this was the closest reasonably priced hotel we could get. A half hour away. But due to construction and [probably] rush-hour traffic, from the time we left the motel until we got our parking garage ticket, it was two hours - TWO HOURS!
This was not our first rodeo in Boston as we were there in 2001. The last visit was before I started these detailed summaries (and we actually used film and was a little [OK, a LOT] more conservative with the shutter). It was also before we started getting the stamps and visiting the capitols.
Last time we spent nearly a week in Boston, so this time our target was the capitol visit, and not too much more.

The Boston skyline.

As we got closer, we passed by Chinatown. The green roofed entrance arch was more impressive from another angle, but it was one of those "Hey look. Oh, there it goes." situations.

We parked in the Boston Commons underground garage.
In some of the cities - especially the larger ones - parking is not cheap. And by "not cheap", I mean $8.00 for the first thirty minutes, and then $8.00 for the next, and then $8.00 for the hour after that, or some similar tiering.
Not counting Concord, Montpelier was, so far, the least expensive parking with $1 per hour for two hours.

Our first stop of the day was - the capitol!
After parking, we made our way above ground to the park - it's a big park.
First, we passed a dedication to the city's founding.

And a carousel in the distance, also helping show how large the park is.

We continued out trek toward the capitol's golden dome.

Our obligatory selfie - and another one of those "what the hell is the phone focusing on?" pictures.

There was some construction / restoration taking place at the entrance, and the entrance just to the right was closed. So we had to walk to the side entrance.
There was a courtyard approaching the side entrance, and it included a statue, and a 2007 firefighter's memorial.


While we were trying to find the visitor's information desk, we came across a couple on a guided tour. We were told that they hadn't been going too long and were welcome to join them. I asked "how long is 'not too long'?" Response: "About a half-hour." Sorry, but for a one our tour, half the tour IS too long to start in the middle.
We finally arrived at the visitor's desk, got our stamp, and waiting for our guided tour.

On our way to the visitor's desk, and while waiting for our tour to start, we snapped some images. We didn't know what would or wouldn't be included on the tour, so we got what we could. They'll be integrated into the tour where appropriate.
We spent an hour on the tour with the docent, Julianne.
We started off talking about the capitol, and saw this model of what the capitol would have looked like before the expansion.

Doric Hall, named for the ten doric-style columns in it, was the next stop. Here's a stitch.

The doors at the end of the hall are used in only a few instances.
1) When a sitting president visits. The last time that happened was Taft in 1912.
2) On the last day of service for the current Governor, who goes through the doors and "becomes an average citizen".
3) When flags are returned from the battlefield.

In the hall was also a bust of John Hancock, the signer of the Declaration of Independence with the huge signature, but also the first Governor of Massachusetts.

There was also a portrait of Abe Lincoln.

We were in a small hallway between Doric Hall and the Hall of Nurses. There were a couple statues, and this ceiling.

We then entered the Hall of Nurses.

The ceiling, a staircase, and the floor, in the Hall of Nurses.

Above the archways to the next hall were some murals, including one of Paul Revere's ride,

Through the archway and into the Hall of Nurses is Memorial Hall.
The skylight in the hall, with the 13 original state seals.

We continued on to the Hall of Flags. This used to be an open courtyard, but was enclosed in 1990.
This hall has flags for each of the cities and towns in the state. There will be a total of 351, though about 20-30 are still not hung up yet, partially becuase some of these towns don't even have flags.

Our journey continued toward the House and Senate.
We passed this stained glass window along the way.

Some Civil War murals, in a hallway. The woodwork is left in the corner of the one image to show the detail.

The soldiers stopped to change trains in Concord (?), and a scuffle broke out between soldiers and protesters. A shot was accidentally fired - the technical first shot of the war - on the anniversary of the first shot of the Revolutionary War.

A decorative stained glass ceiling.

This Roger Wolcott sculpture was by the same sculptor that did the Lincoln Memorial.


The full house chamber, for all 140 representatives.

Across the front of the chamber are some portraits, and around the chamber is a listing of the names of presidents and other important figures.

In the gallery, above the clock, was the "sacred cod". It was essentially a good luck charm for the house.

We left the House and headed toward the Senate.
This dedication to mothers was between two archways.

The Governor's reception.

A Senate meeting room.

The table top is made up of 13 pieces, one for each original colony. The lighting and plexiglass make it a little difficult to see the pieces - it is assembled in a pie-shape.
I highlighted some of the more visible seams in the table. Some of these may be approximations, and I think I got about ten or eleven of them, but it should still convey the idea.

I highlighted one of the smaller pieces, probably represented Rhode Island or Delaware, and it doesn't even reach the center of the table.


The full Senate chamber, with seating for 40, is under the main dome of the capitol.

More of a close-up of the clock and seal above and behind the senate presidents desk.

The large chandelier, some of the dome, and a banner in the background.

A closer-up of the banner in the image above.

The Senate had a fish - a holy Mackeral - built into the chandelier to go fin-in-fin with the House's sacred cod.

The lady bug became the state bug when a 2nd grade class, in 1974, petitioned the government to make it so, then showed up on various days dressed in lady bug costumes, handed out leaflets, and even testified to support it.
This just goes to show that "anyone" can make an impact.

Somewhere in our travels in the capitol, we passed these, a "regular" staircase, and the "grand staircase".

The very last stop on our tour was in a small hallway that contained a dedication to six women of Massachuset's history. The "background" behind the portraits are all clips of text of things the women wrote or about the women.
It was a relatively narrow hallway and the stitch process isn't rendering these two that well, so I just sort of put them together.

After the capitol tour, it was time for lunch.
We pre-planned a couple options, but most pretty much required a drive somewhere. So we decided to just walk to Quincy Market. It turned out to be a little bit longer of a walk than we thought, but it was no problem.
We started our walk to Quincy Market. Along the way we spotted this Freedom Trail marker. We did most of the FT last tme we were in Boston, so we didn't do any of it this time.

We also came across the this Samuel Adams statue.

We had planned to eat at Boston Chowda'. But when we got to Quincy, we came across Boston & Maine Fish Co. So we ordered from there instead.
We ordered a lobster roll and a chowder bread bowl, which came with a bag of chips, and shared them.

As we walked away from the counter with our tray of food, the next booth was the Chowda' place. Oh well.
We found a seat by asking a couple that was sitting at a table for four if we could join them. The said yes. We talked with Ray and Janet for probably a half hour while we ate. Halfway through, the guy that worked at the place we bought our food stopped by - to give me my credit card that I accidentally left behind. The first time ever that that happened to me.
It turns out that Ray and Janet are travelers much like we are. They were visiting from Salt Lake City. And they have taken Viking Cruises, like we have, and even took the Amsterdam to Switzerland one, like we did (last fall).
Back to the meal: it is still a little early in the season, and that includes for lobster. The roll was just OK. Perhaps for the price we paid our expectations were higher, buuuut... meh.
I don't think Janet was too thrilled with the lobster roll either since she didn't even finish her's.

After eating, we headed back to the Commons.
Here are some shots from around the city on that jaunt

Our car, from this perspective, was parked in the farthest corner from where we were. As we strolled through the Commons, we captured some sights.
Park wildlife consisted of the typical, except this pigeon had dark feathers (with another in frame for reference [and yes, I know, you've probably seen a pigeon before]), and this squirrel had a brown tail.

A fountain (yes, I know you know it's a fountain...)

This monument, "in memory of the nurses of the armed services" was in what we think is the center of the park, with the relief on the side of it.

We wound up being closer to the carousel now.

It wasn't too long when we were back at the car and heading out.

The next stop on itinerary was the Boston Public Library. We wanted to see the library, but also relax a little. And we were in no rush to get back to our motel room.
We found parking on the other side of the next block over, on the other side of Trinity church. I asked the guys with the van if they would mind moving it so I coudl get a better picture, and they told me to "buzz off" (no, not really).

The church from another angle after leaving the library.

We parked, paid at the kiosk, and walk over to the library.

The library seemed to be in two major sections, the older portion, and the newer portion.
These first few shots appeared to be from the older portion.


A room off the main large library, with a shot of the ceiling.

The main section of the library, stitched.

The top floor of the library: the ceiling, and a mural of Christ called The Frieze of Angels.

And a collection of very old books - most of the title look to be in Latin (?).


We were done in the old section, and moved onto the other section of the library.
We went all the way back down to the first floor, past the lion statues, through the seven levels of the Candy Cane forest, through the sea of swirly twirly gum drops, and then through the Lincoln Tunnel...
At the bottom of the stairs, turned left, proceeded downt the hallway, and passed an old door with interesting hardware.

A little further we went outside and past this courtyard - with some students [assumedly] enjoying the decent weather.

The newer section appeared to be a main floor, a second floor, and a lower level.
The level seemed to be more of utility space, gathering rooms, and other non-book related use.
One of the first things we encountered in this area was the "on hold" shelves (yes, plural).

I walked into the middle of the shelving, and did got enough images to do a full ~340° stitch (the final rendered stitched image was thirty-seven feet by five feet. Yes, feet.). This is a little smaller than that...

Below the green Exit sign in the stitch above, off in the distance, there is a cafe.
We were there when they made an announcement that they were giving away the left over food from the cafe. There were some homeless people in the library, and I am sure - and hope - they probably lined up to take advantage of it.
Also, over by the cafe, there was a TV station studio. Yes, a TV station studio.
(Yes, I had to wait to get the scroll exactly where it was.)

At some time, lovely wife took a picture of me. I was probably playing a game of Boggle With Friends, or doing the New York Times Bee, or Crossword (and since it was Tuesday, I either finished it or at least most of it).

We were done in the library and headed back to our car.
A church across the street from the library.

Some tulips in bloom.

As previously mentioned, we usually eat dinner, and then head to the next city (unless we have multiple day stays planned in one city). There were no reasonably priced hotels available in the Providence, RI, area, so we stayed an extra night in the Boston area. Plus it was a less-than-an-hour drive between Boston and Providence. So we stayed this night near Boston.
As we were staying in the area, we chose to eat somewhere in town, before returning to the motel - especially since we weren't exactly in any hurry to get back to our motel.
We had a location picked out - Pauli's - for dinner. We found a parking space a couple blocks away, and around the corner. This is the sort of street that is barely wide enough for two vehicles, and is only one way (curb side parking). There may or may not have been a "Permit Parking Only" sign that we may or may not have seen before or after we chose to park in that particular location.
As we walked to Pauli's, we talked about their menu. It was primarly a sandwich shop, with a number of other items. We had nothing against Pauli's, but Linda said something like "I want to have pizza".
I really didn't care. So we turned around and a couple locations down was - an Italian restaurant. So that's where we went. It was called Antico Forno.

It. Was. Fantastic.
We had some fresh, crusty bread with dipping oil as a starter.

Then we shared an appitizer of calamari fritti, semolina fried calamari, drizzled garlic herb dressing, mixed greens, and cherry tomatoes.

And we shared ~60/40, a la Capricciosa pizza, San Marzano tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, homemade Italian sausage, mushrooms, and artichoke hearts.

This really was a great meal. There were only ~18 people in the restaurant when we say - but it WAS still early, about 5:30.
There was also this shrine to the Blessed Mother near the oven.

The shot glass for Boston, and by extension Massachusetts, is another that we had picked up on a previous visit, so we didn't bother getting another.

We were done with the capital. We reluctantly decided to head back to our motel in Walpole.
On the way, we decided to go to Dollar Tree - or is it really the Dollar-Twenty-Five Tree now? - to get some "eating" supplies, such as places, napkins, cups, and utensils. This would make the situation of getting in-room breakfast a little easier to manage. So we searched on-line, found a location, and drove there. We wound up going through old town Walpole.

We bought our supplies, got back into the car and headed back to the motel.
Guess what... overheat. We pulled onto the shoulder first, but apparently didn't wait long enough. We pulled into the parking lot of an account firm or law firm, and waited. Then, good to go.
We returned to the motel, had some wine, and went to sleep.

Fun fact: Boston is one of five capitals with no Governor's mansion.

 

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