Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

April 7, 2012

Down by the banks of the river Charles

Our family spent the day in Boston yesterday, and I had the song that those lyrics come from playing through my head for most of the day.  Can you name the song without Googling it?  Think about it while you read my post.  I’ll include a YouTube video with the answer at the end.

Our original purpose for yesterday’s visit was a campus tour of Boston University.  Expecting heavy traffic for our drive in, I roused my troops early from bed on that non-school day to give us plenty of time to work our way to the “T” station (how locals refer to the public train/subway system) just outside our state capital.  We arrived with surprising ease and little traffic, finding ourselves at our location, the BU admissions office with time to spare.
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I took the opportunity to look around at my exact location and, of course, take some pictures.

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Before arriving at BU, I hadn’t realized just how close to the Charles River the campus is.  I peeked around the corner from admissions to discover it right across busy Storrow Drive.  ( I thought I took a picture at this point to show you, but I didn’t find one. Hmmm… maybe I accidentally deleted? Or maybe I really didn’t take one)

One of my favorite spots in Boston is also within walking distance….

Can you guess the place I’m talking about before you scroll down….

I bet you know…

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Yup, Fenway Park.  The boys will be back in town for the home opener this coming Friday.

After an unfortunately disappointing campus tour that left Meghan even more uncertain about her feelings about the school, we headed for lunch and another ride on the T, to the Boston Museum of Science.  This was Meghan’s request.

At the museum, I was taken in by the gorgeous views of the Charles River from the museum’s gigantic picture windows.
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View of the picture windows with the perpetual motion machine:

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We didn’t have the time or energy to get to all of the museum’s great exhibits (we missed the Omni theater, the planetarium and the butterfly garden), but we did stroll through the new live gecko area.

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Feeling rather tired after hours of walking (the tour, the museum, back and forth to the T) the four of us gathered to decide how to wind up our day.  Starting to feel a little hungry and facing the ride home, we decided to head for the famous Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market to find some dinner.  Tucked in an underground store in the marketplace we found a great little place called the Zuma Tex-Mex Grill.  Far from fancy, this restaurant had truly delicious food.  Hubby and I shared some of the best jalepeno poppers I’ve ever eaten.  I had a tender and flavorful fajita-style steak sandwich.  Hubby loved his burrito, and the girls were happy with their meals as well.

Exhausted and satisfied, we happily hopped on our last T ride of the day – uncrowded with seats for all four of us- and made our way back to the T-station, followed by a 75-minute drive home from the station to dogs elated to see us.

Did you figure out the song without cheating?

June 2, 2010

The Boston Red Sox, Baseball and Me

Filed under: Uncategorized — Karma @ 8:44 pm
Tags: , ,

I hope the title of this post doesn’t turn some possible readers away, such as Yankees fans or those who don’t consider themselves followers of sports.  Its about more than the Sox, I promise!

This past Friday night, I attended a game at the beloved Fenway Park in Boston.

It was a horrible, embarrassing loss to bottom-feeders, the Kansas City Royals.  The experience got me thinking about my relationship with the Red Sox and how it has grown over the years.

As a child, I didn’t really pay much attention to sports.  My father was (and is) a big sports fan, so the Red Sox were always there in the background of my consciousness.  I wouldn’t call my dad a fanatic, but he would enjoy watching a game when they were available on Channel 38 from Boston – no fancy NESN (New England Sports Network, for those of you reading from out of the area) broadcasting virtually every game.  Sometimes my mom, sister and I would even decide to pick up a couple of Red Sox tickets for dad to go and see a game at Fenway. Tickets to those games were cheap and abundantly available in the 1980s.  I even remember the heartbreak of 1986, and the ball rolling through Bill Buckner’s legs, putting an end to the team’s World Series bid that year.

In the years that followed, as I went through college and then married and started a family of my own, the Red Sox were still there in the background.  The man I married is a rarity among men I believe; he doesn’t really follow sports!  Sure, he’ll watch a football game if he happens to be home on a Sunday in the fall, but it is really no big deal to him, so the Sox still hadn’t come to a forefront in this household.   It may sound sexist, but my children did not create a grand interest in sport either; my girls are dancers.  Sports are no big deal to them.  I would still glance at the paper from time to time to see how the Sox were doing.  Excitement about a title for the Sox seemed to be nowhere in sight.  The curse of 80+ years with no championship continued.

Then things started to change.  My sister got married in 2002 to a man who is a sports fanatic  really enjoys watching all kinds of sports.  A traditional guy in charge of his remote control in the house, sports are always on tv in their home. She began to chat with my mother and I about the Red Sox. In 2003, the Sox had something going.  A guy named Pedro was pitching the Sox to some victories and heating things up in the American League East.  Hopes were dashed in the American League Championships by that team from the Bronx. (They don’t deserve a link!)

2004 was quite the famous year.  I don’t have to say too much about it.  The 86 year drought ended. Call me a “bandwagon” fan, but that’s the year that I jumped in with both feet.  I became, as the movie “Fever Pitch”  proclaims, “the most pathetic creature on Earth, a Red Sox fan.”  Red Sox fever took over.  This is the Christmas card that I sent out that year:

The fact that this World Series victory not only ended “the curse” but came with a crushing collapse for the Yankees in the American League Championship, made it only that much sweeter for Sox fans everywhere.  We savored.

  Having something to follow and keep up with and feel a part of something special really helps a person get into a sport, I believe.  My sister watched, my mom started watching too, I watched.  I started watching regular season games on a fairly regular basis.  I started a new job in 2005 where I found people who enjoyed talking about the Red Sox.  I wanted to know more.  I watched games and I read: the newspaper, blogs, books.  I started to understand pitching rotations, in-field fly rules, ground rule doubles and ERA’s, terms that would have been foreign to my vocabulary a few years ago.  By 2007, I got really serious and decided it was time for me to go to Fenway!  I’ve lived in Massachusetts my entire life, yet I’d never been to a Red Sox game at Fenway Park.  I felt it was a right of passage that I had earned.  In April of 2007, I went to my first game:

I fell in love with the atmosphere!  The sounds, the smells, the sights, the Green Monster!

And I have continued going back ever since.  I’ve been lucky enough to get to go to a least a couple games each year since 2007.  Jennifer is usually the one who accompanies me (hubby is yet to jump on that bandwagon), and she was the one who came with me this past Friday night, despite being absolutely exhausted from a business trip.  This trip was an example of the persistance of Red Sox fans.  Our team is wallowing around 4th place in the American League East this year.  Teams start losing and typically “bandwagon” fans start jumping off.  I’m not.  I’m planning to enjoy a good summer of baseball.  I admit to being so disappointed Friday night that I did not feel like singing “Sweet Caroline” in the 8th inning for the first time ever (Jennifer called me a sour puss!), but I’m not giving up hope on the season.  I will persist!  The Red Sox don’t always make it easy on their fans, but I think its great to have this something of which to feel a part.  When Sox fans talk, we say things like,”So who are we playing tonight?”  or “Who’s pitching for us tonight?” and its understood.  We may not be members of the Boston Red Sox, but they are our team.