Sunday, October 7, 2012

Day 29/60: Fairhaven to Boston

Today turned out to be sort of a rest day. Between creative tasks and errands, it was nearly noon by the time we left the Seaport Inn and Marina in Fairhaven. Boston is only 66 miles away. Though we passed various waterways and land forms, as I could see on the map, the scenery was dull because both sides of the freeway were lined by trees, a mix of pine and maple mostly. Neither the iPad mapper nor the navigator on the car would cover the route we chose, so I had to be the final authority; Dan knew the route he wanted to use because we have been here twice before.

We got in before 2 and drove straight to the Summer Shack, a restaurant Dan remembered fondly. I thought my meatloaf without gravy, mashed potatoes, and mixed green salad was Mmm-mmm good, but Dan was disappointed by his Mahi Mahi. The Summer Shack is a big place with a casual atmosphere, reasonable prices and smart service—very busy during evening hours but quiet mid-afternoon.

We checked into hour hotel at 3:00 and, after organizing our room, we both lay down for a nap that turned into a very long sleep. We got up around 8 p.m., greatly refreshed.

Boston is so expensive that both previous visits we have stayed at a really grotty place at the end of the metro line, called the T here, near the Alewife station in Cambridge. This entailed a long and unpleasant walk along a highway and over a bridge to get to the T-station.

This time I checked the downtown hotels again, and found the rates formidable, especially when a parking charge is added. So we compromised by staying in the same area, but at a better hotel, a Best Western Plus. Best Western is one of the oldest nationwide hotel chains, and when we first started staying at them several years ago, they were a definite upgrade from the Motel 6 and Super 8 where we had been staying. Nowadays, many of those original properties are getting pretty run down. In Philadelphia one of the 2 elevators was broken and the other one went ker-klunk when it landed, causing the Japanese guests alarm. In Long Island City the room smelled like mold, which aggravated our allergies. The Best Western Plus in Cambridge is a new property in excellent condition; a quiet building in a quiet area. The AC/heating works efficiently and quietly. The fridge is in a cabinet that muffles its occasional ticking. Free breakfast; free shuttle to the T-station and back with a regular schedule. A pleasant, brightly lighted lobby bar.

When we first got there, Dan mis-read the price as $285, which he considered exorbitant considering how far from downtown Boston the motel is. It aggravated him so much that he complained to the desk clerk. He pointed out first that the rate is $225, and second that we were there on Columbus Day week-end, and motels in the area were fully booked. Dan was mollified.  Just being in this place is having a refreshing effect on me.

Both Dan and I are feeling much better today. We fought nasal congestion and coughing all the time in Philadelphia and New York, but both of us feel much more normal today.

A weather change came through last night dropping the temperature about 20 degrees. It was sunny when we started, by the sky filled with clouds on the way. I got out my "big coat" tonight.

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