Another great day. We started it early with a drive out to Hopkinton just outside of Boston to visit Project Just Because. I found Cherylann Walsh, founder of Project Just Because, googling my book "Just Because" on the internet. A couple of emails later, a book and a letter sent and an excited phone call from Cherylann, a connection was made. She has an amazing charity to help those in need in the Boston area.
She invited us to visit her on our travels. What an amazing visit. First of all, I told the kids that from my phone call with her, she seems like a friendly and loving person. That is just the icing. She is the most delightful person I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. Secondly, she told me so modestly that she was just a homegrown little charity. Again, icing. She is doing wonderful things. First off, she has a sign bigger than the McDonalds sign down the road and she takes up 1/2 of the building she's in with boxes filled with toys and clothes for the homeless, school kids, abused women, tragedy stricken families, holiday gifting and more. You have never seen so many plastic storage boxes in your life. She helps 15,000 kids in her holiday gifting program and I think, around 2,000 back to school backpacks. I don't know how she does it. She is an inspiration. A couple of months ago, she bought 100 of my books to raise money and awareness for her cause. Our missions are so aligned and it is amazing we were able to make a connection.
She gave the kids (and us) a wonderful tour of her facility. She really knows how to relate to the kids. The kids listened intently and asked good questions. I forgot to mention that I threatened their lives (in so many words) before we arrived. Though, unintentionally, I thought Matthew might knock one of the boxes onto his head. Karma was on his side today. :) We all had a great time.
We headed back for Boston feeling inspired and grateful. The next part of the day was spent on a two-day trolley tour of Boston. It is a 2-3 hour trolley ride and Duck boat tour that takes you from the Harbor to Harvard and everything in between. You can hop on and off where you choose.
Our first stop was at the USS Constitution. One of the oldest naval ships still afloat. It is a cross between a pirate ship and a colonial ship. Pretty cool. We were in line to go through a full body search, ok, metal detectors like the airport and licenses and the guard tells us they were closing it for 15 minutes and it would be another 45 before we could get in. 3 kids 45 minutes in line armed guards = moving right along. So we left the line and went to the USS Constitution museum next door.
The museum is free (donations encouraged). That's nice but I didn't have my hopes up for anything exciting. Much to my surprise, it is a really cool museum. Glad we donated. Really clean, nice exhibits, hands on for the kids, kids could pretend to be a sailor. Totally cool museum. Highly recommended.
Hopped back on the Trolley for the Dumb Boats, I mean the Duck Boats.
Booooring, really. (Similar to a 3 hour tour, Dave, around Manhattan, Dave, some years back, Dave.) The Duck boat goes really slow and if you have a bad tour guy-de, even more boooriing. I'm not saying we had to wake up the Harbor but when you feel like rocking back and forth to get it to move faster, that's bad. They are buses that drive on land and float on water. It was fine and our guides were ok. He had it bad because we were the only ones who spoke english on the tour. Which means WE had it bad because we had to laugh at his bad jokes. The kids were a dead giveaway when they'd squint and cock their heads with that "what?" look. Quick elbow to the rib.
Last stop today was dinner at Cheers. Not the original door front. They've watered it down to various locations around town. I felt a little guilty being there. Hunger won...no hungry kids won. Good news and bad news. The food took a long time to come out because "the kitchen lost the order." I was a waitress. That is code for "I messed up." Good news, we got our meal comped. Cheers!
A little swim in a really nice pool in the hotel. Ok, I sat in a chair and watched. Who else would take pictures? Now back in my glorious bed. Let me tell you how glorious. They have a brochure in which you can order the entire bed, sheets, pillows and duvet for about $3,000 delivered to your house. We took the brochure. So good night Dumb Boats, hello duck duvets.
Tomorrow is another day in Boston.