Jonah and i went into Boston last night, just to wander around.
We spent a lot of time in Harvard Square.
First we ate a Au Bon Pain. I don’t think i’d ever actually seen anyone playing chess there, though i’ve seen the tables with the chess boards painted on them. Last night, though, not only were all those tables occupied, but at least two other pairs had brought their own boards and were playing at the regular tables. There was some sort of free folk concert that was finishing up, so we got live music while we had dinner.
We walked through Harvard Yard and i was proud of myself that i found Sanders Theater -- though it’s hardly difficult. I wanted to try to find the house i lived in when i was a baby in Cambridge because i knew it was close and was fairly certain i could find it, but Jonah preferred going back to poke around shops.
One of the stores we passed, though sadly it was closed, was Barefoot Books. It had this window display of Herb, the Vegetarian Dragon. That’s the kind of book i would love to buy for kids. There's even Cooking With Herb, The Vegetarian Dragon: A Cook Book for Kids. I definitely want to go poke around in that store sometime.
We passed a store which sold t-shirts saying “02138: the world’s most opinionated zip code.” I wanted to move to Cambridge just to own one of those.
We ended up walking all the way to Porter Square because from one of the side streets we got back onto Mass. Ave. at a point i didn’t know and walked in the wrong direction. (I thought we were heading back to Harvard Square.) Though we often took the subway in the wrong direction that night (Inbound/Outbound causes me no end of confusion, so we often got on the red line only to get off after one stop because we were going in the wrong direction.) that was the only time i would have considered calling us lost.
We poked around Porter Square a little bit, but it wasn’t too interesting, and we wanted to go to Central Square.
The down escalator was frozen, so i decided i wanted to walk down it. That was a mistake. Very tall, and steep. All the silvery makes you dizzy, so you can’t look down past the few steps just in front of you. I kept stopping, thinking i was going to misstep. My dad told me later that that’s the lowest point on the T system.
Anyway, it was getting dark by the time we got to Central Square and even though i remembered it having lots of neat little shops we must have been going down the wrong streets because it was fairly boring. We found a bookstore, though (Rodney's), and stayed there until it closed. It reminded me of Puddingstone, with the smell of the unfinished bookcases. It was much bigger and better organized than Puddingstone, though.
Jonah suggested going to Newbury Street (Arlington stop on the green line) so we took the red line to Park Street (where one changes for the green line). We were sitting with an empty seat between us because that way you can turn your whole body toward the person you are talking to, but the car got filled up and when these two women came in the only seat left was the one between us. As one of the women sat down, Jonah said, “Bye for now” because he’s dorky like that. The woman started to get all apologetic, but we assured her it was no problem, and i pointed out that we were getting out at the next stop. This relieved her, because “I don’t want to come between you.” She thinks we’re dating! “And her father didn’t pay me.” I was tempted to joke, “But did his father pay you,” because after all, guys can have overprotective parents, too, right? I restrained myself, though.
Anyway, we took the green line to the Arlington stop and walked all the way down Newbury Street because Jonah assured me there was another T stop at the end. (And there was -- the Hynes Convention Center green line stop.) By this time (nearing 10:00), most stores were closed, but there were a lot of restaurants open with tables outside. I thought that was really neat. One of them had these little black tables with red candles (well, red bowl type things with candles inside them).
On the green line back to Park Street we bumped into Jonah’s friend Andrea, but we had more time before our train left than they did, so while they went back to South Station we walked in the park for about ten minutes before heading back. It was raining lightly, but neither of us minded.
It’s only a couple stops on the red line from Park Street to South Station and it’s hard to miss the South Station stop, but i looked out and saw a sign that said Broadway. I quickly glanced at the map and indeed, it’s the stop right after South Station. Jonah and i got off the train very quickly. Eerie. Plastic over the signs. Brown paper hanging off the tops of the pillars. Bright white tiles. If i had come into the station from outside i would have thought it was under construction and no trains stopped there. Our train had stopped, there, though, so i knew one would come in the other direction. Red lines run every ten minutes. I won’t freak out until after ten minutes. We’re only one stop away from South Station. We’ve got forty-five minutes until our train leaves. We’ll be fine. Yeah, i was not succeeding in keeping myself from freaking out. I felt much better when someone came down, even though she was waiting for a train in the opposite direction. It felt much less Twilight Zone-y when we weren’t the only people in the station. And then someone came down to wait for our train. And then a red line came in our direction. We’d been waiting less than five minutes.
Of course we got into South Station 15 minutes before our train even started boarding. (Our train home out of South Station is the very last commuter rail to leave South Station, might i mention. If you miss that train you are stuck in Boston -- though i think some buses still run.)