Sunday, June 27, 2010

Brownies Are Amazed!

Today was a very fulfilling day. The Summer@Brown program had allowed us to explore Boston, Massachusetts and acquire many facts about the city that we missed in the first trip. We also got to experience more than just the old Boston, but the new, vivid one.The day started with about 10 large coach buses picking us up and taking approximately 200-300 students to our destination. The buses were beyond what we have seen back in California because they had comfortable seating and powerful air-conditioning.

The drive to Boston was very eventful. Not only did I meet new people or connections, I got the chance to compare the roads over here to the ones at home. I can see that there is just so much nature, it is almost sickening. Now I know I love to recycle and the earth is my friend, but if I have an accident, then I want to be seen and rescued as fast as possible. It was nice to see nature for once, and not billboards telling you to buy things. After the rather lengthy drive, we had grouped up with friends and began picking destinations left and right. While some wanted to walk around and see all the sights, others wanted to shop. The group did eventually break apart because some wanted to just see the sights and others wanted to window shop. The “theme” of the trip to boston, if we had to have one, was to do much exploring and get the chance to utilize the all the public transportation that we could muster up.
The first store was a store chosen by Stephanie, which is a very low key, but amazing store called Johnny Cupcakes. Oddly enough, that is a clothing store. I guess you really can’t judge a book by its cover. Inside, it resembles a bakery with shirts inside refrigerators and many bakery boxes with the Johnny Cupcake label. I did end up buying a shirt, but I was torn between whether to buy it or not. Being in this situation where money is not readily at hand really cause me to think whether to buy it or not. So I did buy it, but I still question if it was worth the price.
On the way to the mall, we had the chance to utilize that public transportation. It was very much like the last time we were in Boston, simple, easy and cheap. The way we took to go to there was we took the red line to transfer to the Redline. From the Redline we would have to transfer to the Greenline free of charge. This set up really reminded me of the Bart to Muni setup in SanFrancisco, only this one seemed far more simplified and readily available throughout Boston, opposed to only being in the downtown districts.

Once you are beyond the safe haven of the public transportation system, you would need one or both of the following items, a car and a GPS. This is because in Boston, the many old buildings look the same. One cannot say “it is by the old brick building” because that would describe a large portion of the houses in Boston. Good thing Megan has the full plan on her I-Phone or else we would still be there lost.
There is a lot of history in the city of Boston. One of best parts about Boston is that if you block out all the modern cars and the labels on the city buildings and ignore anything over four stories, you could pretend that you hundreds of years ago. The many statues shows much of its age. Some examples would be this one on CommonWealth Avenue. Created by Arthur Delevan Gilman, this avenue is filled with many statues and commemorations such as one of Alexander Hamilton and another of Abigail Adams. If you are able to picture a long concrete path, with lush green grass on the sides and tall trees reaching for the sky and shading you on all times of the day, allsandwiched in between two streets and colonial style houses, then you have CommonWealth Avenue.

Next was to roam around the local mall, which has over seventy stores and over twenty restaurants, which one of them was Clam Chowda, an example of great, local cuisine. This mall has many stores to choose from whether you would need a pair of shoes or a set of tea cups, chance is, they have it. This greatly describes a modern culture that is a perfect contrast to the older style living that surrounds the area. The older area here is home to many upper class individuals, so in par with the class, comes a new array of shops. If you would compare this to Hilltop mall in Richmond, it would be very luxuriant. With stores such as Gucci and even Martha Steward, it is a sight to behold.

After experiencing my first taxi ride we headed toward Chinatown. The reason for the taxi was because of the lack of time. If we were to use the bus or subway, we would have to wait and deal with stop after stop and still have the possibility of getting lost. This way ensures us that we will get to use every moment we could muster. Still, Chinatown was more of a quick stop because the time shortage. From our vantage point, I could assume it was a food area as opposed to SanFrancisco Chinatown, which is a melting pot of shops and restaurants. After that we headed home, where Ms. Bulls took us out for supper at Dave and Busters.

After supper came something very new for me; the Waterfire Show. This is when they have a river with many large bowls in it. Then inside them were large piles of wood, like in a campfire. There would be very dramatic classical music playing to add to the effect. It seemed as if all of Rhode Island was there! I was expecting large fireworks and something very exciting, when in reality, it was a number of small boats, slowly chugging around at a slow place lighting fire after fire. The fire was very bright in contrast to the dark. According to the Waterfire website, it is “by Rhode Island residents and international visitors alike as a powerful work of art and a moving symbol of Providence’s renaissance.” I would definitely agree because there was a feeling of embodiment happening as you feel the music flow through your ears and the fire crackling violently and the light flickering by the very light breeze.


This day was a very educational experience. The Brownies had the chance to experience the life in the city of Boston. It was very productive because it shows that the transportation system in Boston is very productive. Also, that the city of Providence is more than just a big city in a small state, this is a very festive and city.

1 comment:

  1. I love your pictures of Boston! You should have gotten something for me while you were in the mall shopping (especially at Johnny Cupcakes). Your waterfire pictures are beautiful when the flames are being contrasted with the darkness behind it. Good work.