Boston and Baseball (and No Blood)

If you read THIS POST, then you know Todd and I went to Boston last week to meet up with a dear friend of ours from long ago and his family. Ed (he will always be Eddie to me, but I’ll tell my story with the grown up version of him) is probably the non-family member I’ve known the longest. We moved into the house across the street from him when I was about 18 months old.

Ed and I were very fortunate to grow up in a great neighborhood with a ton of kids around our age. There were five of us girls, all in the same grade, and even more boys either a grade above or below. Before we were old enough to our summer days at the beach, we busied ourselves riding bikes or skateboards or, my favorite, playing rowdy games of kick the can in the street in front of my house. We hung out on the corner (this is not a euphemism. We literally sat on the curb of the corner) until the streetlights came on – or even longer as we got older.

There are so many stories I could tell you, but I won’t. Partly because this is about our reunion in Boston and partly because I’d just rather not. Put it this way. When I’ve told my kids some of our shenanigans they both just shake their heads and say, “We are such better kids than you were.” *THANK YOU, JESUS!*

One more thing before I move on. Todd and Ed were high school friends. We all went to the same school, but I didn’t know Todd until we’d both graduated and, in fact, met him at Ed’s house. That friend of Eddie’s was super cute. I realize that statement isn’t relative to the story, but a fact is a fact and I findit worth mentioning.

Okay. Now back to Boston.

Todd and I set out from our hotel to meet up with Ed’s family at Boston Commons so we could start the Freedom Trail. We’d planned to take the subway, but couldn’t find it. The GPS in my phone kept messing up with the tall buildings and we ended up walking all the way. ALL.THE.WAY. I was so happy when we made it to the park. Except we were at the bottom of the park and the Freedom Trail is at the top of the park. So we kept walking. It’s a tall park, y’all. According to my maps app, we walked 1.6 miles just to get to the beginning of the Freedom Trail.

We had received messages from Ed saying he was wearing a yellow shirt. It’s been 30 years since we last saw Ed and Todd and I would get excited when we’d spot a man in a yellow shirt. Finally, we found him and his family!

Introductions were made to his wife, Andi, and their three kids, and we set out to get all historicized. (HA! I thought I was making up “historicized” but it turns out to be a real word.)

The Freedom Trail is really interesting and I hope to do it again someday, next time with Precious. I made the decision to leave her at home because I get so distracted with taking pictures and I didn’t want to miss out on catching up. Here are some pictures I got with my phone, though.

But better than the Freedom Trail was catching up with Ed and getting to know Andi and the kids. Their oldest daughter just transferred to Northeastern, which is why they were in Boston to begin with; their middle daughter is going to be a senior at the same high school we went to; and their son is starting middle school, also at the same one we went to. These kids were so pleasant to be with. They were very kind and what really impressed me was how well they got along. Ed and Andi should teach parenting classes or write a book!

We weren’t able to complete the trail because we had to get back to the hotels and then turn around for the Red Sox game, but we managed a good portion of it. Of course, we probably could have seen more had Todd and I found the blasted subway to begin with. *sigh*

Walking, walking, walking – so much walking. To Franklin Common, on the trail, to the subway, to our hotel, to their hotel, to the subway, to Fenway… You had best believe I didn’t feel one bit of hesitation to eat whatever I wanted that day. We had lunch at a pizza place and I had an entire pizza to myself. Full disclosure – it was a single serve pizza. But still. I also had a Samuel Adams because, when in Rome Boston…

The guys went to the ballpark early on and the rest of us caught up with them later.  The train to the park was so packed. I couldn’t get past the steps so I just stood there and hung on, which really we didn’t need to hold on to anything. We were packed like sardines so no one was going anywhere.

And then we were there. The Green Monstah Monster. I loved just about everything about it. The atmosphere, the food, the people (except for one obnoxious drunk who, thankfully, left our vicinity and ended up practically on the field). AND Ed bought our tickets as a gift for Todd’s birthday. I mean, what’s not to love?

Since you know how I am about food and I enjoy the memory, I’ll tell you what I had at the game. I had an Italian sausage with onions and peppers on a brioche bun and it was sublime. I also had a cherry coke and a package of cracker jacks because, hello. Ball game. But I felt totally gypped because there were like five peanuts at the bottom of the bag and that was all. And I forgot to see what my prize was.

*note to self. See if you can find the prize.

The Sox played the Toronto Blue Jays and it really is true that Canadians are very polite. There were four Jays fans sitting several rows ahead of us and they would stand up, chanting, “Let’s go, Blue Jays!” and try to bolster the crowd to chant the same. They never lost their temper and were always in good humor even as the Sox fans were yelling funny (yet friendly) insults. I even saw them hugging the older women (all Sox fans) that had been sitting behind them when they left.

My favorite part of the game, though, was during the 8th inning when we sang Sweet Caroline. SO.MUCH.FUN! As of this very moment, Fenway is my favorite ballpark ever. EVER!

The end of the game meant more walking around, searching for the train to take us back to the general vicinity of the hotels and we walked by a Wahlburgers. I have made a mental note for the next time we find ourselves in Boston.

We finally made it back to our part of town, said our goodbyes and walked to our respective hotels. It was truly one of the best Labor Days I can remember. Even Todd’s throbbing finger couldn’t ruin the day. Spending it in Boston was great, but hanging out with Ed and his family put it right over the top.

2 thoughts on “Boston and Baseball (and No Blood)

  1. OMG – you have no idea how my heart was fluttering in anticipation of seeing you both after far too long!! Just a complete joy to be in your company, and I honestly feel like Todd and I picked up where we left off, sans Billy Tokuda. I feel very blessed that you two endured the rains to make the SIX hour drive just to see us, especially after Todd’s redesigning of his finger just prior to the trip. (I hope Todd didn’t see me smile or chuckle at his reactions when he would accidentally hit his bandaged finger.)

    Thank you for the comment on our parenting. If you only knew! Outside of your presence, Andrew was a constant PITA!! However, we have always told our kids that their job was to behave in such a manner that they are invited back, and perhaps that was why you got to see Andrew better behaved.

    I couldn’t love this story more, and you know where you fit in my heart. Really, such a joy for me to see you both, and I can’t stress that enough!!

  2. Andrew was great and he’s a 6th grade boy which, in my opinion, is one of the worst ages! So extra kuddos to you and Andi. 🙂 I’m just glad to know you felt the same way about the visit! xoxo

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