"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

August 13, 2013

Aug. 12 - Boston, MA

Boston Waterboat Marina Mooring

It was another beautiful day for cruising in the Atlantic, by lunch we were moored just off of Long Wharf staring at the skyline of Boston. It's always a lot of fun to cruise into cities like this and see views we've seen all our lives in pictures and on TV.

We've been to a lot of historic places while we've been cruising and coming to Boston helps tie some of the history we've learned together. I just wish I were better at retaining the knowledge I've learned. We spent this afternoon walking the Freedom Trail, seeing some of the places that played such important roles in America's independence and finding ourselves trying to imagine what it was like here 200 years ago.

We spent the evening in the North End, where Little Italy is located. What a fun neighborhood. Hanover Street is a lively place filled with restaurants, bakeries and small shops, bustling with locals and tourists. We like finding popular little local places for dinner. Stan read about a place called Giacomo's, so we went by to check it out. It was too early for dinner but we did visit with Tony, one if the waiters. We got into the usual conversations of where we were from and how we got here…he had lots of questions about the boat. He was so friendly told us to make sure we came back as soon as they opened at 4:30. We didn't arrive until 4:45 and the place was full! It's a small place with only 10-12 tables...people wait for hours to eat here. We had to wait about 30 minutes, but we had fun visiting with everyone else in line. Tony treated us like family and sat us at his best table. The food was incredible, full of wonderful flavors and fresh ingredients, at a great price. We could understand why people get in line early here. (We had the lobster ravioli with diced tomatoes in a garlic cream sauce  and fettuccini with salmon and sundried tomatoes in a tomato cream sauce)

What a beautiful day to cruise into Boston
The view of Boston from The Pearl
The Old State House - Also known as Boston's "Towne House", dates back to 1713. This Georgian style structure was occupied by the British during the Revolution and was a continuous reminder to the settlers of British dominance and presence in the colony. The Old State House was the center of all political life and debate in colonial Boston. On July 18, 1776, citizens gathered in the street to hear the Declaration of Independence read from the building's balcony, the first public reading in Massachusetts. The Royal Governor presided here until Thomas Gage left in 1775, and the seat of Massachusetts government resided here until the new State House was built on Beacon Hill in 1798.
The Granary Burying Ground was founded in 1660, the third oldest burying ground in Boston proper. Paul Revere is interred here along with 3 signers of the Declaration of Independence, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Robert Treat Paine. The Boston Massacre victims are interred in Samuel Adams family tomb. Approximately 5000 people are buried at Granary even though there are only 2300 headstones. Since funerals were expensive, there would be one headstone per family.  
Massachusetts State House - Built in 1798, the "new" State House is located across from the Boston Common on the top of Beacon Hill. The land was once owned by Massachusetts first elected governor, John Hancock. The dome, originally made out of wood shingles, is now sheathed in copper and covered by 23 karat gold which was added to prevent leaks into the State House.  
The Old North Church, known as "Christ Church in the City of Boston", is an Episcopal church built in 1723 and is Boston's oldest Church building. On April 18, 1775 Paul Revere met up with sexton Robert Newman to tell him how many lanterns to display in the Old North Church's steeple to signal how British troops were advancing, "One if by land, and two, if by sea".

The steeple is 191 feet tall, making it the tallest steeple in Boston. The bells within the steeple were the first bells ever brought to America. Paul Revere was one of the neighborhood bell ringers. The interior high box pews and brass chandeliers, as well as the Church's first clock are all original.
The inside of the Old North Church. This is still an active congregation. Can you imagine going to a church with so much history?
The restaurant opens at 4:30 and fills up right away...after that there's a line. This was a Monday night...just think how it can be on the weekend. If you aren't in line by 5:00, chances are you won't get in!
The inside of Giacomo's (Tony is the guy at the counter to the left...what a fantastic person)

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