A Little Sightseeing

Boston Travel Blog

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flags outside church

Sunday morning we headed back to the T station to go to the Old South Church for a special church service. Megan had chosen this church for our Easter services because the service had a special blessing of the marathon runners. There was a line outside the church when we arrived but that was because the doors had not yet been opened to us. I admired the architecture of the church and the nearby buildings while we waited.

Once inside we sat down on the left hand side, our group taking up space in two pews. We watched as the church filled with both its usual parishioners and many out-of-town guests. The service was a beautiful one. The prelude music was well-done and uplifting, and the choir sang very well. The sermon was short but gave a powerful message about death being defeated.

stained glass from inside
We felt welcome and appreciated. The lead pastor referred to us as part of their extended tribe, a term I've used before in regards to my running family. The blessing was given by one of the heroes from the day of the Boston marathon bombing.

After the service we tried to find somewhere to eat but the restaurants in the area all had long waits so we decided to take the T back to our hotel's neighborhood. There was a restaurant on the corner where we turned to head closer to the hotel and we liked the menu. We got two tables outside but under cover and stayed shielded from the sun. It was a nice environment and we enjoyed seeing people go by (and watching the sidewalk sign get picked up each time it fell over from the strong wind). We also joked about me trying to stop Laurie from eating pancakes when I misheard part of the conversation.

hero who gave the blessing
..

Following lunch most of the group went back to the hotel, but Dad had been wanting to do some sightseeing, so Mom and I joined him. I love running but my race was already over and travel and seeing new sights are in my blood so there was no real choice for me here.

We toured the USS Constitution first. She is in dry dock right now, no sails and no steering wheel while undergoing repairs. The guides were informative and I enjoyed being able to go below deck and explore the ship at my own pace. It was neat to see the names of the guns above the portholes were they had been stationed years ago. I was also intrigued by the list of names of men who had died while serving aboard the ship.

We then visited the next door museum. It gave background on the ship: her building, her service in battle, her journey to this spot.

Boston skyline from near the USS Constitution
Upstairs were more hands-on activities to help bring the story more alive for the kids. I walked through the exhibits really quickly just to make sure that we weren't missing anything really interesting. The kitchen part where kids pulled the ingredients for meals aboard the ship.

After this museum visit, we walked back to the hotel to refresh ourselves before heading out again, this time towards Bunker Hill. We crossed a street, went through a short tunnel and then headed uphill through a historic neighborhood. We picked up our timed tickets at the NPS building and continued our upward journy to the monument. We entered a tiny building to show our tickets and then faced the biggest challenge: nearly 300 steps to the top of the monument.

This was hard.

My mom did ok for the first 75 steps but then started needing to take breaks. Every so many steps, there would be a small landing and we would take a break. I appreciated that the steps were marked at times to know how high we were (I think it was every 25). Sometimes we would encounter other tourists on their way down; several times we waved other groups around us.

Finally at the top Mom gratefully sat on one of the benches (very limited seating but it was a small space). Dad and I took picture out of the windows. I enjoyed looking down on the rooftop areas of the housing buildings just as I had done over a decade before when I had climbed this monument. Mom took a few peeks too once she had regained her breath.

The trip back down was easier but my knees were still a little cranky. We returned to the small NPS building which had housed exhibits the last time I had visited. Back down through the historic neighborhood, we detoured through a green square before going through the tunnel and to the hotel.

Dinner that night was a short walk away where Megan's friend Lindsay met us. Leslie and Janie were also with us, having moved hotels that day to be closer to the actual race route.

Then we were back at the hotel--the big day was tomorrow!

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flags outside church
flags outside church
stained glass from inside
stained glass from inside
hero who gave the blessing
hero who gave the blessing
Boston skyline from near the USS C…
Boston skyline from near the USS …
from the USS Constitution
from the USS Constitution
Old South
Old South
posing at the finish line
posing at the finish line
remembering the bombing victims
remembering the bombing victims
NPS vehicle
NPS vehicle
We might never do this again...
We might never do this again...
Boston
photo by: bubu932