A few weeks ago, I got to go with hubby to Boston, where he was attending a conference! Pookie came too (I’ll talk about the travel experience another time).
While my personal goal was to see the ships (the last time I was in Boston for a conference of my own, I didn’t get to do much sightseeing), part of my plan was to also get Pookie to see fun places, and to get pictures of him there!
There is a children’s book called Make Way for Ducklings, which is set in Boston, so stop one was to go see the duck statues. I believe it is based on a real story, and it is by Robert McCloskey.
|From Right to Left: Mrs. Mallard, Jack, Kack, Lack, Mack, Nack, Ouack, Pack, Quack, and Pook!
One of the place names that caught my eye was the Charles River, and then also the subway tickets! I initially thought they were named after the river, but apparently it’s actually because of a song by the Kingston Trio, back when there was some controversy about complicated fare systems and fare hikes.
|A Charlie Ticket. Regular user fare cards are “Charlie Cards”. The back has a picture of Charlie boarding a train.
The next place I decided to go was the “Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum”. They spent very little time talking about the reproduction ships, unfortunately, which made me doubt their veracity, and one of the docents was offensive and belittling when I asked a question. With that, the fact that not one single costumed tour guide wore a wig, and the excessive cost of the tourist attraction, it earned a solid DO NOT RECOMMEND from me (note: I sent them feedback, and they are offering a refund, so I’m now waiting for a reply about how to make that happen. This raises my estimation of the establishment a bit). They did, however, engage the non-historian public reasonably well, and have some interesting integration of technology into their tour.
|Pookie in a sling on me. If you look closely, you can see the turkey feather he’s wearing as the “Indian disguise” for when we board the ship.
|One of the two – possibly identical? – ships that supposedly are repros of the cargo vessels that were originally boarded.
While I had fun walking about the town and seeing the touristy “history”, and Pookie had fun in the sling, I needed a more balanced way to carry him around, and had not brought a front or back carrier. So I borrowed a backpack from our luggage, and rigged up a back carrier for the bear!
|Pookie in a backpack!
|Bundled Sarah carrying bundled Pook!
The second day of sightseeing was aimed at finding better and more authentic history, with less touristy gunk and more old things. After a brief stop at a fantastic bakery (called Mike’s Pastries, in North End – a sort of little Italy neighborhood), we went to Paul Revere’s house. I was worried this would be touristy gunk again, but it was actually excellent. Their entrance fee is only $5, and while small, it is well put together, well signed, and extremely well docented. I asked questions about some repro fabrics on a bedstead, and when the docent didn’t know, he pulled out the binder that the site had prepared, with acquisition and provenance info on many of the items in those rooms. Fascinating!
|The street frontage of the Paul Revere house. The street is true cobblestones, as well. Lovely.
My next stop was a random little print shop and chocolatier. It’s actually right around the corner from the church I’m about to talk about, and worth popping your nose into!
|Printer, explaining his press.
I was then close enough to walk to Old North Church, and a little park behind it with a statue. Old North Church is actually not just a historic site, but also still has an active Episcopalian congregation.
|Paul Revere and Old North Church
|Pookie, enjoying the pew boxes. He’s in the one labeled “wardens and visitors”!
So much fun already, and it’s only lunch time! We stop for some tiramisu, before walking onward and upward to the USS Constitution, the ship I’d been aiming for the whole time! Touring the ship is free, and has a small museum attached, after going through security. The site is run by the Navy. Well presented, and a beautiful ship!
|Pookie firing a deck cannon
Next door to the ship there is a dry dock, as well as a “Constitution Museum” about early Navy life, which is essentially a children’s museum, and FABULOUSLY presented (the entrance fee is a suggested donation). I should have gotten more pics of Pookie there but was starting to tucker out at that point, and it would have been funner with hubby there…
|A hoisted stuffed goat! The children’s Constitution museum talked about a lot of aspects of shipboard life. The goat kept bleating!
While those museums just about completed our sightseeing. The next day, we hung out for most of the morning. I was thrilled when the café lady asked who “my friend” was!
|Well, the spelling isn’t exact, but the spirit is there!
We also spent some time in a bookstore, where Pookie found one of his favorite books to read:
|“Little Pookie” by Sandra Boynton!
Then once our travels were underway, we had a layover where we could go to an (airport) diner, where Mike our waiter was so much fun – he enjoyed interacting with Pookie as much as hubby and I did!
|Pookie picking music.
|Thieving a sip of my milkshake!
In all, a fun trip! I highly recommend the USS Constitution, and the museum next door if you have littles!
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