Boston 22 August – Brand USA

So as memories begin to fade I now have the opportunity to get down on a page what happened on 22 August in Boston. Our luxury transport took us from the fantastic Four Seasons along Boylston to the equally welcoming Mandarin Oriental so that we could have our bags stored until our return to check in.

The first port of call was Fenway Park, home currently to the Boston Red Sox. The tour was about the stadium and it’s history and other activities that is hosts rather than focusing on the Red Sox themselves. In baseball terms this stadium is small and houses 37,000 fans when full. Between the seating stands what is known as the ‘Green Monster’ which is a high wall with the score board below.

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There is some seating available right at the top for those brave enough to get there. The stadium has it’s own allotments and grows much of it’s own produce which is interesting. Some of the original wooden seating is still in existence alongside more modern seats.

Flags adorn the outside of the park with notable player numbers that have been retired. Names such as Babe Ruth and Jimmy Collins stand out to me.

It is interesting that almost all people we spoke with outside of the stadium and obviously inside the park were ardent supporters of the Red Sox and were all up to date with the teams current progress.

After Fenway it was back in the coach over the river to Havard Square in Cambridge. This was a bustling area and evident that the colleges were a major part of the community. We took a tour of the grounds hosted by a current student whose enthusiasm was all too evident. We also saw where Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg resided when he was there. My impression was that Cambridge and Oxford are very similar in layout. After a burrito lunch we had some free time so I wandered through the many stores there and the stand out store has to be the Havard Co-op which is a student run store with all things, over four floors, Harvard.

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To be a student at Harvard it will cost Mum and Dad at least $50,000 a year so I guess the prices of the hoodies and t-shirts wouldn’t be a surprise to them.

Returning to the Mandarin Oriental we were checked in and went up to our rooms. My goodness the room was enormous with a hallway, sofa, office, separate walk in wardrobe and the bathroom which had a large bath, double vanity unit, separate toilet and separate shower. It was amazing.

The funny thing for me was that I called home via Whatsapp and was showing my husband my temporary palace and asked where he was and he mumbled that he was in the Travelodge in Derby. Quite a difference.

We had a meeting with the manager of the hotel who hosted us in the boulangerie before showing us some of the other suites in the Mandarin Oriental.

The highlight this evening was being picked up by our trusty blacked out window coach to be taken to the North Shore to get on a sunset cruise of Boston Harbor.  We had been supplied with lobster rolls by Legal Sea Foods along with Cape Cod chips (crisps) and coleslaw.

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This was a treat because the sunset was just perfect. The twinkling lights of the city started to permeate the horizon as the sun settled over the harbour. It was a glorious way to finish the day. Departing planes from Logan across the bay flew directly overhead so it was like a plane spotting exercise for us travel professionals. The cruise lasted about 90 minutes and after seeing the flag being brought down on the USS Constitution and the canon being fired to end the day it had been a day of tradition and history.