A Little Scuttlebutt

Trip Start Jun 03, 2008
Trip End Aug 12, 2008

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Black Bear Campgound

Flag of United States  , Massachusetts
Sunday, August 3, 2008

We got a little later start this morning so the kids could spend some time with their new friend Jennifer before we left for Boston.  This is one of Ellen's favorite places and couldn't wait to share it with Clark and the kids.  

First stop....Bunker Hill.  Another battle sight of the Revolutionary War.  Clarkism, "Kids, this is where Col. William Prescott's order to reserve fire and aim low because powder was scarce happened. Reputedly Israel Putnam passed on the order in these words: "Men, you are all marksmen-don't one of you fire until you see the white of their eyes." The British won the battle, but the patriots' stubborn resistance at Bunker Hill became a symbol of American resolve." Almost all of their shots were made good and the Brits lost half of their troops in the battle.  So today at Bunker Hill stands a monument similar to the George Washington Monument in DC.  It is open to climb the 294 steps to the top and so that is just what we did.  And of course there were spectacular views of Boston from the top.

Next stop the USS Constitution or better known as "Old Ironsides".  We took the 1/2 hour free guided tour that takes you below two decks of the ship.  This is one of the first ships built in the patriot fleet and is the oldest warship afloat still in commission.  She got her nickname from some sailor who cried out "Huzzah, her sides are made of iron!"  She is actually made of solid live oak and has won every battle she every was involved in.  On the gun deck there is a barrel full of water called a scuttlebutt.  This is the only place where the sailors were allowed to gather and have time to talk or "gossip".  It seems the water cooler was a place of chatter even then and in those conditions.

We were all getting a little hungry so we were off to Little Italy for a bite to eat.  It wasn't so little.  It seems to be growing.  It used to be smaller than the one in NYC, but now is probably 5 times bigger.  It was the celebration of the Madonna and they were having a festival.  There were vendors in the streets with food and fare.  There were hundreds of restaurants to choose from, so we just picked the first one we saw.  Yum!  Real authentica Italiano food!  Was it ever good!

Right outside the door of the restaurant we picked up the Freedom Trail.  The Trail took us tourists to historical sites that covers two and a half centuries of America's most significant past. A red brick or painted line connects the sites on the Trail and serves as a guide. Since the past and the present live alongside the Trail, we had the opportunity to see the City as it truly is. Many people prefer to linger and study the many exhibits, especially if their name is Clark.  We stopped along the way and enjoyed many of the sights new and old including Paul Revere's famous ride.  Was escaped a down pour of rain all the while in a museum of the Meeting House where the Boston Tea Party event started.

Ellen was a little disgusted to find out that the sight of the Boston Tea Party had burned (2nd time) and there was no plans on reconstructing it at all.  There is a plaque in amongst a dump sight.  This was after all what made the statement to the Brits that we meant business and no one is interested in keeping it as a historical site.  She was very disappointed. 

We started back and took a detour away from the trail to see some different sights.  We found ourselves in the outer skirts of little Italy again.  We were enjoying our walk past the "card room" when we heard a band coming our way.  They were having a parade in celebration of the Madonna.  Were we in some movie?  Was this really happening?  Who happens upon a parade twice in a vacation?  It was very interesting.  They were collecting funds for someone who just recently passed on and the dollar bills were attached to a statue of the Madonna. 

We continued to walk through the streets of Boston enjoying the architecture and sites.  We wondered down to the wharf and walked along the water for a bit before leaving this fabulous city! " Trot trot to Boston, trot trot to Lynn, trot trot home again and don't fall in."  This is a nursery rhyme taught to Ellen as a child who taught Audrey and Rusty. They of course had to sing song it all the way back to camp.
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