Boston Common

2012 Year in Review – March

According to my Facebook year in review, the only cool thing I did in March was become Facebook friends with Shaun Adamec (the VP of Communications at City Year for those of you who aren’t familiar). Mark Zuckerberg must think very highly of you, Shaun!

In terms of work, the most exciting (but perhaps annoying) thing that happened was the Back Bay Blackout. Thanks to some explosion or fire or something (I tried to not ask questions) I was given a magical couple days off of work. So we did what any other rational 20-something in Boston would do… A Sam Adams brewery tour!

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Apologies to everyone across the City Year network who had to deal with not having access to e-mail and office phones, but still had to go in. Bummer.

Then of course, there was St. Patrick’s Day! It was really great because Chris Young and Chris Pierri (with a few friends) came out for the weekend to celebrate. Probably one of the best weekends I’ve had living out here. So glad you guys could make it out!

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Other highlights included:

  • Black Keys/Arctic Monkeys concert at TD Garden with Dan
  • A particularly beautiful Friday where I hung out in Boston Common with some co-workers before going to see the Hunger Games
  • Fun birthday dinners for Julie and Katie
  • Drinks at Biddy Early’s – with quite the compelling conversation about the dangers of dolphins (at least I think this was the time that happened…)

Five things Friday: Life in Boston Edition

I’ve been living in Boston for about a month now, and so far, so good! It’s a lot different from San Jose, but I definitely feel a San Francisco-esque vibe here that I’m totally into. And thanks to visits from friends and a very social roommate, I’ve already done a bunch of fun stuff here and have even started to know my way around (which if you know me, that’s a huge feat).

Here’s a list of the things I have found to be really enjoyable in Boston so far:

1) The T

As someone who hasn’t owned a car over the past two years, the T is a blessing. Public transit wasn’t too bad in San Jose, but the T blows VTA out of the water!

Luckily for me, I live really close to an Orange Line stop and that line runs right by the City Year office and Emerson College, so it is pretty ideal. My only complaint is that the T stops running pretty early (around midnight-ish) so if you don’t want to cab it home from a late night out, you have to cut your night short. But maybe that’s not such a terrible thing…

2) Jamaica Pond

I live in Jamaica Plains, which is a really cool area of Boston. It’s a fairly quiet neighborhood in comparison to the college-ridden parts of town and there is a really cute downtown area.

My favorite part of Jamaica Plains is the Jamaica Pond. It has beautiful scenery, you can rent sailboats and rowboats, go fishing or walk your dog. I try to make it there every day to go running around the 1.5 mile loop, cause if I’m putting myself through hell to try to get back in shape, I might as well do it in a pretty place!

3) Sam Adams Brewery

It’s no secret that I love breweries. Thankfully, I have the Sam Adams Brewery right around the corner!

I love the Sam Adams Brewery because the tour is SUPER informative (they even passed around hops for us to check out), the tour guides are really friendly and it’s free.

During the tour, they take you to a tap room where they show us how professional beer tasters sample their wares and encourage us to do the same as we “taste-test” up to five different brews.

They provide you with a small Sam Adams taster glass for you to keep and don’t charge you for the beer, either. They do ask folks to give a donation that the brewery will then in turn donate to local organizations that work with kids. Can’t go wrong with that!

After the tour, they offer you a free Party Trolley ride over to Doyle’s Pub, which is the first bar in Boston to serve Sam Adams (and also apparently makes an appearance in the film Mystic River). If you go there from the tour and buy a Sam Adams draft, they will give you a really nice Sam Adams glass for free. Excellent.

4) Boston Common

This is a really cool area in Boston that just so happens to be where Emerson College is located. There is a really pretty park, lots of cute café’s and eateries and of course, pubs. I really like Sweetwater Tavern and have frequented the AMC movie theater in that district. I’m excited to spend a lot of my time in the Common.

5) Purple Cactus

One of my big concerns moving here from San Jose was that I would be doomed to eat crappy Mexican food for the rest of my life. Then I went to Purple Cactus and saw the light.

Not only do they serve burritos that are the closest I’ve found to the greatness of California taquerias, but they also serve delicious fruit smoothies (I highly recommend the Classic Blonde).