Halloween 2011, Part 3 – Boston

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The drive down to Boston was quick, and I actually took it as a time to meditate and reflect on the last few months of insanity and adventure. It’s strange, honestly, to go for a long drive with just your thoughts. The radio (or an iPod/CD/etc) are such constant companions on the road that turning them off and sitting alone with your thoughts it a pretty unique experience, and its one that I very much enjoy when I’m in the right state of mind.

My thoughts wandered pretty impressively – from my previous relationships to the unknown of traveling New Zealand, and from the last few hours at the Loj to the first time I had seen the glow coming out of the window as I walked up the trail. My mind hovered around a cool little project that I’ve been tumbling around in my head, giving me a chance to smooth out the edges of my plan to design a personal banner, an “honor standard” like those that old-school knights used to carry. Its an egotistic idea, but I figure that its a neat idea. And honestly, why shouldn’t I be proud of my achievements? I’ve worked hard for them, and I think they deserve to be put on a banner.

I broke with my thoughts for a short detour to Tilton Diner, one of the favorite lunch stops on the drive from Gorham back to Boston, and had myself a very nice breakfast-for-dinner meal. I’ve been going to the Tilton Diner for nearly six years at this point, but I’ve never ordered the “fancy breakfast meal” special… until this time. For some reason I had been craving pancakes and bacon (not the good thick kind, the diner kind) for a few days, and this was a perfect excuse to have some. (Ed Note: As I’m writing this I’m still craving Bacon. Damnation!).

Once I left Tilton my thoughts and I had endured enough of each other, and so I cranked up the tunes and sped my way into the city. The night turned out to be an amazing time – I met Mike, Daniel, Chirag and Cosimo at a restaurant called “The Asgard” where Mike had already gotten a reservation. Since I was first I got to sit in the AMAZING king chair at the head of the table, and spent the night cavorting with the guys, catching up, and drinking down an amazing red ale that they had on tap. All the while lounging around in a chair that could fit a giant. Yep, life was good.

After the waitress told us we had to head out because her shift was ending Daniel and Cosimo headed back to their places, and Mike Chirag and I headed to Chirag’s place to hang out for another few hours, since none of us had to be awake at any crazy hour. We hung out, smoked a bit of Hookah, and chatted for a while before powering up my Laptop, attaching it to Chirag’s TV, and rocked out to Gangs of New York for the rest of the night. Seriously… if you haven’t seen this movie then you need to. Daniel Day Lewis, Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz, and directed by Scorsese… damn its a good one. Made for a very nice night, especially with Chirag and Mike, and the Hookah set up in the middle of the room.

I crashed in the big attic above Chirag’s place, and slept like a baby for the few hours that we had before the sun came up. Once morning rolled around Chirag and I headed out and I gave him a ride to his job at Best Buy. Like I said, not too early, but earlier than I’d been getting up recently… its actually kinda nice to get up early every once in a while, you know? Tasting the crisp air and the new sun is pretty solid, at least if you don’t see it every day, hehe. Though I’ll admit, my favorite part of working at Biogen was quite possibly the bike ride in every morning – fighting against traffic and tearing through the city just an hour or two after the dawn had broken.

After dropping Chirag at his work I found a semi-safe parking spot and started wandering around the city. It was definitely safe in terms of theft, but only semi-safe in terms of parking tickets… nowhere in Boston is truly “safe”, except for parking garages where their more likely to get dinged. Anyways, I spent the morning wandering around trying to find myself a good breakfast, finally ending at Chicken Lou’s on NEU’s campus. I got myself a “cholesterol on a bagel” (bacon, egg and cheese) and then headed to Curry Student Center to write and read for a bit.

I chilled, relaxed and ate my bagel, and reminisced about the living on campus, studying for finals in Curry, and how much everything had changed since then. Seriously… I don’t know why I was being this introspective, but it was kinda nice and a bit melodramatic at the same time. Either way, a facebook message lead to me meeting up with Allison on campus, which led to hanging out with her for pretty much the entire rest of the day until I headed out from Boston. We chatted, wandered around campus, and got ourselves caught up with where each others lives had gone in the two months since we broke up. She had just gotten out of a Co-op interview, so we talked about interview strategies and tactics, swapping stories about horrible interviewers and insane job questions. After almost five hours of kicking it I headed out, aiming to meet with my Mom and Grandma for dinner.

Before leaving the city I took a quick side-trip to Occupy Boston to satisfy my curiosity as to what was actually going on, and I have to admit that it’s pretty impressive. The Tent City is at least a hundred tents strong, and it takes over an entire section of the public park. There were a few protesters hanging out and chanting, but to be honest it seemed a bit deserted for the number of tents. The police presence was rather intimidating though… it seemed like there was at least one cop per protester, and they all had some form of heavy riot gear on them, though they were just sitting outside the Fed building and watching with amusement. And I honestly was mirroring their amusement, to a lesser extent; while the protesters were definitely organized in that they were all in one area, and seemed to be sharing food and supplies, they were definitely not organized in their message. Each tent had its own sign and its own stated goals, some of which were logical, but some were a bit strange. And the goals weren’t focused on just the economy or Wall Street either; some were calling for the political parties to be dissolved, some were calling for Coca-Cola to be banned, and others were against an undefined “The War” (not mentioning if it was terror, Iraq, Afghanistan, or just all war in general.

After hanging out and taking a few pictures I headed out from Occupy Boston and jumped onto the highway towards my Grandparents place. The drive was quick, and before I knew it I was having some rather stellar dinner while chatting about my previous trip and my future trip plans. My Grandparents traveled extensively when they were younger, although not in one go like me, and so she told me a few stories of her own with my mom’s backup stories from her perspective. It was actually really neat seeing three generations worth of travel ideas; how its changed and how its stayed the same. Neat 🙂

A good weekend, no doubt about it, and a very fun way to spend Halloween.

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