On Wednesday morning, I packed my suitcase, grabbed Uncle Fred and my favorite blanket and headed to the hospital thinking I would be there for five days. Two hours later, Dr. D came in the room and said we’d have to wait a week until I could start my fourth round of chemo. I was certainly not looking forward to being in the hospital for five days but I was ready for it. I had mentally prepared myself and there’s always a sense of “excitement” to start the next phase because it just means I’m one step closer to the end goal. So in a weird way, I was disappointed that I didn’t get admitted last week— not to mention, my bags were packed and I knew I’d have to unpack just to repack— the worst.
One year ago today I woke up like a kid on Christmas morning. It was my first ever Marathon Monday. I had heard so much about this day and all it’s wicked glory. As a kid who grew up in New Hampshire and went to school in Florida, I had never gotten to experience the excitement and pride that this day brings. My Beacon St. apartment was directly in front of the mile 23 marker— my first floor living room window looked right out onto the street as the runners pushed through the final few miles. Our apartment was filled with mimosas, buffalo chicken dip (and an endless array of unhealthy snacks), jello shots and of course, an ice cold keg of cheap beer. It was a party and I was THRILLED to be a part of it. April 15, 2013 was a beautiful day for a race. Blue skies, a slight wind, and sunshine. A perfect day for a celebration. With a red solo cup in hand, I stood with my girlfriends on the sidewalk cheering on all the participants. I had never been to a marathon before and I truly was blown away with the strength of these participants. By the time I was seeing them, they had run 23 miles— 23 miles!!!— it’s a feat I really can’t even fathom. One of my favorite moments of the day came when a group of military men and women marched by. As they passed with an American flag being held high and proud, the crowd starting chanting, “USA! USA! USA!” I felt such a sense of pride in that moment…not only proud to be an American but to be a Bostonian. During that moment, I remember looking around at all the bystanders and all the runners and really trying to take in what is so special about this day. It’s Patriots Day. It’s Boston’s day. And for the first time, that meant it was my day too. It’s all of our day.
Wednesday night, the Red Sox became world champions for the third time in a decade– dynasty. I was in high school when they won it in 2004 and was living in Tampa when they won it for a second time in 2007. Thankfully, 2013 I’m right here in Boston to be able to get in on all the celebratory action.
With any big championship, although you like to hope that it will happen time and time again for years to come, you just never know when the next time will be so I was ready to take on the city and get the full championship craziness. Saturday morning rolled around and I was up at 7 and making bloodies by 730. Great way to start the day. Mike made a delicious breakfast of potatoes and bacon egg and cheeses– meal of champions right there. Finished up breakfast and popped a bottle of champagne because clearly that’s necessary on a day such as this. Overall, champion choices were being made time and time again before 9am.
Took the train down to City Hall and the energy was electrifying. Everyone out and about dressed in their red, blue and Sox finest. Not like it doesn’t always, but it felt pretty damn good to be a part of this city. The streets were absolutely packed and buzzing with excitement. The parade had begun and we just had to wait for the Duck Boats to arrive on Cambridge Street. After about an hour or so of waiting, the rolling rally was right in front of us. Mike put me on his shoulders so I could see– which really was necessary, as these 5 foot stumpy legs were not helping my cause of seeing anything past the kid in front of me’s baseball hat. Up on the shoulders I went and I suddenly had the best seat in the house. The boats went by and it was so exciting to wave to all the players and see the trophy in person– so shiny and big, it’s quite the sight. I nearly broke Mike’s neck with the amount I was jumping around up there but I couldn’t help myself– it was like partying with the team, and that, that’s a fun time. 20 minutes later and all that was left on the street was red, white and blue confetti.
The parade may have ended but the day certainly did not. The streets were still buzzing and every bar in Boston was absolutely packed– just the way I like it. After about 15 minutes of waiting in line, we headed into Hennessey’s (seems to be my go-to place for big days and nights of drankkkking lately) and continued on a glorious day of beers, wings, singing, friends and laughs.
Yesterday reminded me of every reason why I love living in this city. Yes, it may get cold in the winter months and yes, the traffic can be really horrendous at times but the heart of this city is pure perfection. The sports are second to none. The bars and restaurants are absolutely on point. And the people are the most genuine, spirited and big-hearted people you’ll find just about anywhere. There truly is nowhere else in the world I’d rather live. So today, I’m waking up on this cold, rainy Sunday feeling wicked grateful and wicked happy to live in the best city eva, Boston, Massachusetts.
After over a year of having no more than four consecutive days in a row off, I was delighted when the clock struck 5pm last Monday and I was officially ‘off the clock’ for 6 days in a row- wahoo!!!
Mike and I started the vacation with a trip to Portland, Maine. I haven’t ever been there and it’s less than a two hour car ride. So we packed our bags and headed north. As luck would have it, we got up early, packed our lunches, got in our bathing suits and headed straight to 62 degree and raining weather. No bueno. With that, we checked into our hotel and ended up doing this the rest of the day:
Hopping from bar to bar to bar. Not what we had planned but I’ll never complain about a day like that. We ended up at a nice place called The Grill Room & Bar for dinner. It was absolutely delish! We sat at the ‘chef’s table’ which was offered to us because there were no other tables left. So glad they did, we got to see all the food being made and the chefs and wait staff were super nice. We had so much food and everything was phenomenal– in particular the lobster bisque and lobster tail. If you’re ever in Portland, this place is a must try. Here’s their website: http://www.thegrillroomandbar.com/
Wednesday we woke up and it wasn’t as cold but not very sunny so we decided to hop on a ferry and take it to a small island off of Portland called ‘Peaks Island.’
While we were ferrying over, our luck turned around and the clouds lifted and the sun came out. All of a sudden, it was hot, sunny and absolutely beautiful out! We got to the island, changed into our bathing suits & cover ups and rented some bikes. The island is only 4 miles wide but so quaint and adorable. The people here are really friendly, the houses are beautiful, the views are breathtaking and there’s a small beach that you can walk (and we laid out for on a while). They have a few small restaurant and bars right on the water, in which we stopped at two of them.
To my dismay, we had to leave this perfect little place only a few hours after falling in love with it so when we got back to Portland we treated ourselves to some unbelievable lobstahhh rolls and headed back to Boston.
Thursday– it’s America’s Birthday. I love America, so I love this day!!! We headed over to a good ‘ol back yard pool party to have some good eats, good drinks and good laughs with good friends. It was about 95 out and really sunny so it was a perfect day to be by a pool. What’s more, I got to see my favorite little creatures in the world– bull dogs! Our friends have two english bull dogs, “Hogan” and “Hoodsie.”
We finished the day at another friends house to enjoy the fireworks from their rooftop deck in Charlestown. Great view and of course, the Boston Pops put on a great show. Gotta love patriotic music– always puts you in the spirit!
Friday and Saturday I spent with my a bunch of girlfriends from college that were in town for the 4th! You won’t be able to find me much happier than when I get to be back with my best friends. I hate that we’re all scattered around the country so whenever we get a group of us together, it’s really special. Here’s a few pics to sum up our two days together:
drinking coronas in the pool
crushing delicious bloody’s and breakfast in the morning
and topping off our vacation together the best way we know how… with a lobstahhh dinner!
A week later and the clocks about to strike 5pm again on Monday. It’s safe to say I won’t have the same week as I did last week.
Until next time,