12 hours in Boston

Ship in the Boston Harbor

My summer adventures began in an unexpected way.

I landed in Boston, Massachusetts at 9:14am. My flight to Paris was at 10:00pm. Up until this point, I had convinced myself that I could wait patiently in the airport for 12 hours while an unexplored city simply waited outside… I lasted one hour before I was frantically googling a way to get out of the airport. Spontaneously, I bought a ticket for a water taxi, got on the Massport #66 bus outside of terminal E, and arrived at the docks. I would definitely recommend this method! They will store your luggage for you while you explore (which is incredibly convenient as Boston airport does not have storage options) and give you a ride back to the airport bus at your specified time. 

Standing there on the dock, I began talking to two other travelers also lugging around backpacks and waiting for the boat. After a few minutes, the girl and I (hi, Becca if you read this) discovered one of those strange, inexplicable connections that sometimes happen– that I was heading to Paris possibly going to meet up with one of her friends from high school in Zimbabwe. Furthermore, I had met this mutual friend through another one of her high school classmates (hi, Zinzie) that I had become friends with at university in St. Paul, Minnesota and had just seen the day before. Somehow, we met during the same layover in Boston while heading to opposite parts of the world, but we knew some of the same people from equally distant places. 

I spent the rest of the day with Becca and Matt, exploring everything in Boston we could fit into approximately 9 hours. We walked around the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, stopped at some historic sites along the Freedom Trail, and shuffled through the Boston Public Garden as it started raining. We stopped for a cup of coffee in the Boston Public Library, made a pit stop at the Allbirds store, and then strolled down to sit by the bank of the Harbour. With a few more hours to kill, we decided to go see Harvard. On the way there, our Uber driver told us about giving Malia Obama a ride to yoga and pointed out spots where Goodwill Hunting scenes were filmed. We walked through Harvard Square and the campus trying to pass as students. Lastly we stopped for dinner and made it back to our luggage by passing through Boston’s Little Italy. By the of the day, we had taken 19,197 steps.

Because we both had international flights, our gates were in the same terminal. They came over to hug me goodbye, I boarded my flight to Paris, and that ended the first day of my trip. A day that I had expected to be completely uneventful changed in the best way. 

Boston was a great city full of history and things to do. I would definitely go back one day to see more and plan it more intentionally, but I’m happy with what I was able to see during only one layover. 

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