Boston (11 – 18 November)

We landed in US on the 11th of November. The flight was long, but fortunately, we had a lot of space on the airplane, so we could feel us quite comfortable. Jaanus was looking at the movies and Kaija was trying to finish a book about a road trip in US that two Estonian guys did.


Leaving the airport, we were immediately greeted by the really cold weather. We first had to ride with the Boston T in order to get to the city. It is one of the oldest subway/train lines in the US. The second stop was a Starbucks – yeah, we know, what a cliché.

 

Finally, we arrived at our friend’s house who hosted us for a couple of days. We felt really like at home, because the family we stayed with was so friendly and the kids were so much fun.


The first must see sight in Boston is the Freedom trail. We took the T to the downtown Boston and started the walk along one of the most important historic sites in the whole Boston and US. The trail is very easy to follow and there is also an option to take a local guide. We did not take a guide, but we had a book, from which we tried to read about all the different sights. We also managed to stop by the Boston Tea Party museum or the place where actually the tea party took place. The ones who do not know, the famous Tea party was an incident from 1773. in which 45 tons of chests full of tea belonging to the British were thrown from ships into Boston Harbor by Americans. The Americans were protesting against a tax that was applied on tea by the British.
We also saw the USS Constitution which is world’s oldest commissioned warship. Unfortunately, we were too late, so we could not go on the ship, but we still managed to visit another military vessel from the period of world war II. The freedom trail ends at the Bunker Hill Monument with a spectacular view to Boston.

 

During our walk along the streets we also happened to be part of the great American humor…

  

 Next day Boston greeted us with a lot of rain. We were completely soaked when walking to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the MFA. Luckily, we had planned a museum day! In the museum, there was a temporary exhibition about Winnie the Pooh. We were really surprised that one of the first exhibits which we saw was the Estonian translation of the book.

  

The whole exhibition about Winnie the Pooh, but also permanent exhibitions were just spectacular. We really did enjoy to see the work of US painters – this is what you mostly do not meet in the museums in Europe. We were also really amazed about the collection of famous European painters and impressionists … a whole room full of Monet. Only because of that, it is worth to come to Boston.

  

On the following days we also managed to visit the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. A friend from Estonia was so nice to introduce the museum to us. And yes… we saw the empty frames that are still there after the famous robbery of the museum. We also heard that the museum is offering a $10 million reward for information leading to the recovery of the stolen Rembrandts… so take a good look at the stolen paintings and keep your eyes open!


With rainy weather, we also decided to visit one if the oldest movie theatres in the US – Coolidge corner. We thought it would be really US style to see the famous movie “A Star is Born”. Surprisingly the room was really small compared to the cinemas in Estonia. Despite that, the warm popcorn with butter was extremely good..

 
During one of the evenings, we also managed to walk around Harvard campus area, which was really nice and felt a little bit like Tartu – the university town in Estonia. There were so many young people hanging around, studding and having fun.

 

In the middle of the week we moved to another friend’s place and then again to another house. So we managed to have three hosts who all were really pampered us with delicious dinners and great stories about local life, history and their own travels. The hospitality of the people here in US is just unbelievable… we still just can’t thank you all enough!


We also managed to eat the famous lobster roll and oysters, a huge American burger and a lot of Mexican food from restaurants, but also fast food on the streets. The oysters are probably a must try in Boston, because they are local, fresh and HUGE…


On Thursday the 15th, Boston greeted us with snow. This was a huge surprise for us and we were not prepared at all. Nevertheless, we were quite amused to see the snow, because we will probably not go to many places during our trip where we see so much snow. Luckily Boston is not one of those towns in US which shuts totally down due to a little snow, so it was still possible to move around with public transport in the city.


On the weekend one of our friends took us to the White Mountains National Park in New Hampshire. For an Estonian, everything is really far in US. So we needed to drive two hours from Boston. Nevertheless, the drive was totally worth it, because the hiking trail was spectacular. Although there was a lot of snow, we and especially Alby did enjoy the hike a lot.

  

Unfortunately, half way up to the mountains, we realized that we do not have proper gear to go further. We needed to walk on granite up hill, which was covered with ice and snow and because of that extremely slippery. We decided not to go all the way up and then back down among a much steeper road. So we took the same road back to the car. In the end this was probably a really reasonable decision, because you really do not want to have medical bills from fracturing your ankle in the US… But we still got a really different experience from the hikes we have had so far… we basically went from the tropics with banana trees, straight to the snow and cold. It was different, but still amazing!

During our stay in Boston we also wanted to figure out how we will spend the time in US… we were continuously looking for cheap bus and flight tickets and rental car offers. For now we have managed to figure out that the next stop will be Washington DC. 

In general Boston left us a very good impression. Full of history and culture.  Some pictures of the typical houses of Boston 

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