Friday, September 23, 2011

Wedding in Provincetown Part II: Back to Boston

Say, I think that's Boston in the distance...

Again, my trip to Provincetown a few weekends ago took me through Boston, and I deliberately scheduled a late flight on Sunday (September 11, no less) just so I could explore the city a wee bit.  Just a few points on my stop from the dock to the airport (where awaited another, somewhat irritating adventure):

* On the Bay State Cruise Company's lovely ferry ride back between Provincetown and Boston, you can buy somewhat overpriced foods ($3 for popcorn is not out of the question though).  Or you can smuggle a Long Trail IPA, straight out of Vermont, on the boat with you.  Bring a bottle opener.  It's probably rude to ask them to open it for you. Oh, and still not seasick, though the bay was much calmer than before.

* The last time I was in Boston - on that eight hour layover before my IcelandAir flight to Amsterdam via Reykjavik - I made it to Faneuil Hall for an extremely overpriced and fairly boring lobster roll at one of the many vendors in the Quincy Market complex.  I swore that the next time I hit Boston, I would head to the Wagamama in Quincy Market, and that's what I did. 


Wagamama has been considering opening a location in Washington, DC (they better damn well do it soon, too), but for now the only stateside Wagamamas are all in and around Boston.  For $15 I got their "Absolute Wagamama" combo, which came with chicken ramen (or yaki soba - your choice), three chicken dumplings and a beverage: soda, juice or - yes!!! - beer.  I went with the beer, a Tiger Beer from Singapore.  It was refreshing, but it didn't wow me.  The meal, however, was memorable, especially after I ordered the side of Japanese pickles ($1).  I enjoyed my filling and slightly spicy meal, with chicken that wasn't even dried out like at so many other places, while watching a scrawny shirtless man covered in tattoos outside the window squeeze himself through a tennis racket (!) while juggling chain saws, to the awe of many.


* After finding out that the Faneuil Hall Marketplace was closed, I wandered around the markets for a bit, contemplating some raw oysters and clams at one of the several seafood establishments nearby.  I finally swooped over to the legendary Durgin Park, one of the oldest restaurants in the US, which serves "Yankee Cuisine".  While the service was slow at first, once they saw me they quickly got over to me (you don't stay in business for two centuries with bad service, mind you).  I got a slice of Boston Cream Pie and a Harpoon ($12.50 altogether).

I left for Boston Logan early, and checked in with my boarding pass all ready to go!

Then I get to the gate, seeing a big line at the gate counter.  I found myself in that line when I suddenly got a text from Southwest saying that my 7:20 flight was now canceled, and that I should make other arrangements.  Apparently, BWI had chosen September 11 as their day to do massive maintenance to all but one of their runways.  Perhaps they thought nobody would be flying that day.  They were wrong, and a lot of travel plans were screwed up.  At least I was lucky, for the ticket agent was able to get me on a flight going out later, but originally scheduled to have departed already, so I wouldn't have to do stand-by, which most people did (good choice, too, since hardly anyone was on that plane).  While commiserating with all the people missing or barely making connections at BWI, I went to the terminal E bar to get a beer, a Bunker Hill Back Bay IPA, while some drunk guy from who knows where trash talked the Patriots.  Oh, his waitress was not amused, though she took it in stride - again, that Yankee heartiness on display.  After that and a cheap slice of cheese pizza from the Sbarro's in the international terminal, I finally boarded the plane for home, fuller, more tired, and ready to get up very early for work.