I woke up extremely early this morning, so I decided to walk downtown before meeting Mike for our iPod audio tour of Bah-stan Hah-bah. On my way over, I stopped at McDonald's for breakfast (I know, I know, but I had a coupon and I wanted to buy Mike something generic that he would probably like) We met in front of the New England aquarium and then walked around giggling and looking like idiots, one earphone in each of our ears, shuffling about, so that the earphone didn't pop out and we missed some of very detailed directions given on the audio tour.
The audio tour was done by the municipality, in an effort to revitalize the harbourfront. I guess it worked because it must bring quite a few silly looking tourists like us, down to the harbour to spend lots of money there, and make it look busy.
So, Mike and I saw some nice boats, nice views of the ocean, looked at some gigantic lobster and crabs in a box, saw some sea lions and then it was already 11 a.m.! I had to be on the plane by 2:30 and I still had another walking tour I wanted to do. I said goodbye to Mike, I guess one walking tour was enough for him, and then I headed over to Boston Commons, which is really really depressing this time of year (not that I would know whether it is happy or not any other time of year). All the grass and leaves are gone, and people are just going around with sad, cold faces. I won't even the depressing aspect of the mention the insanely historic gravesite just down the street... oh oops...
Anyway, this time, my audio tour was done by National Geographic, which is awesome. It takes you around to all these historical sites, along the "Freedom Trail". It's a red line that goes all around downtown, which helps you find the quickest way of seeing the best Boston has to offer, I think. I only spent about five minutes at each place, because I was practically running. I saw the site of the Boston Massacre, Paul Revere's house, the first public school for black children, the oldest pub in New England, and of course a handful of really old churches.
Then, it was time to go, and I met Rita, a lady on the street, going to a job interview to become a janitor 1.75 hours outside of the city. She offered to bring me to the subway station. I had to transfer at Government Centre, and what did I hear, but this amazingly beautiful voice coming from a folk singer, busking and selling CDs in the subway. I was just completely blown away, I couldn't even believe it. I immediately asked him if he took Canadian money, he thought about it for a while and said yes, so now I am the proud owner of a CD by Boston's own version of David Gray, John Gerard. I found him first folks, literally underground, in the subway, just playing for the folks a-waitin' on the Blue Line...
From there it was faster than I thought to get to the airport, so I was early. Not a problem, I suppose, because I am fascinated by airport culture, as I'm sure many of you are. There was a really good jazz band situated in a busy food court area, so I stopped to listen for a bit. Most people just walk on by, because they are apparently late for their flights, but I can't believe that, honestly. Why not enjoy a smooth jazz tune, take a breather and chill out for a bit? Kudos to the Philadelphia Airport for taking that initiative. I've seen this at the Charlotte airport as well, but the last time, I was one of those rushing to my gate, even though I knew I would just end up waiting once I got there.
Everyone believes traveling should be something enjoyable, even if you're are in a rush and stressing over the presentation you have to do the next day for the big boss at headquarters, or freaking out over whether your luggage will get transferred anywhere but Timbuctoo. If you keep your head on, and notice the world around you, rather than immediately pushing yourself to constanly think about the next thing that you need to show up for. Or how about this for a breakthrough... At work or school, if you stop thinking about the next thing that's due, or whatever other responsibility you have in front of you, amazing things can happen. I'm not exactly saying a jazz band haphazardly set up in the middle of an airport is one of those "amazing" things, (even though it is really really cool and awesome) I'm just saying that all of us need to listen to that jazz band in our souls, man. Stop stressing, take life as it comes, and stop rushing from one responsibility to the next, ignoring the little really cool, or more likely the big, life-altering experiences that happen when you stop going around through life on "ant auto-pilot". Just a thought, I guess.
Thank you, Boston, for your time and patience.
Next destination, Quebec City for Carnaval.