Sunday, June 21, 2009


I had planned for rain and cold weather and had been unprepared for the heat and humidity in Boston the last few days. Yesterday was sunny and gorgeous, today it was rainy and misty and cool all day. We walked the length and breadth of the city for the last two days. Yesterday we crossed the Charles River from our very interesting hotel. We are staying at a converted jail called the 'Liberty Hotel', and an effort has made to preserve much of the character of the prison. The hotel is very popular and on both Friday and Saturday night, the lobby has been packed with revelers. Maya and I had a drink at the bar Friday after we arrived and the crowds at the bar were six to eight people deep! Maya was uncomfortable trying to balance her Shirley Temple with all the jostling enthusiasm around her, so I joined her in our room with my mojito. The room has floor to ceiling windows with views of hte Boston skyline.

Monica and Thierry joined us with Kaspar and Lorna after breakfast yesterday, and then we walked through the MIT campus with an architecture guide, reading about the interesting buildings by IM Pei and Frank Gehry. My favourite was a science lab building by the latter, with all sorts of interesting colours and shapes and teetering windows. I wonder how anyone can concentrate in such a building, which reminded me of Toontown in Disneyland. I found a Neurocomputational lab in the building and called Eric to look at the possibliity of working in such a structure. Even the furniture inside matched the cacophany of shapes outside. It was very entertaining. The school reacted to the boldness of the Gehry design by buiding an opposite sort of structure across the street, plain and staid and innovatingly ordinary. There was construction for new buildings all over the campus. My favourite part of MIT were the original buidlings which wer first conceived of in a neoclassical style with names of famous scientists carved all along the frieze. We had to cross back over the river to get to Monica's flat on Marlborough and after a quick sandwich wandered over to the Apple Store, where I wanted to check on a workshop I signed Maya up for in July. Apple stores are having these free workshops all over the country,but I could not find one she could attend near Baltimore, so I put her on a waiting list for the store on Boylston Street, which came through for her on July 14. We will be in Woods Hole at the time and will drive up for the morning. Eric and I palnned this for Maya and she was not informed or consulting about it so she objected when I first brought it up, but I think she will enjoy it, or at least I will try to learn as much from her as possible, since it is I that has so much to learn about regarding what my computer can do. It is of course a music workshop that she is attending; how to take advantage of the computer so you can make music with it. So much fun.

Dragging Maya out of the Apple store is a challenge. Our next stop was the Sheraton and ballroom dancing, and then on to the South End for a look at the area, followed by a visit to the First Church of Scientist, which I knew nothing about, but was started in Boston by a woman named Mary Eddy, who wanted to offer an alternative to medicine for treatment of various illnesses through prayer. She started the Christian Science Monitor, and the church and church buildings occupy a huge square and offer a small museum with a 'Mapparium', a stained glass representation of the planet large enough to walk through and admire. I was confused by the religion and was ignorant enough to ask if it was the same as scientology; the response was that this religion was 'bible based' whereas scientology was based on a theory about aliens, as if I should have known that. I guess I was suitably ignorant and unknowing. We walked past the Copley Plaza Hotel, where I had met my first husband at a board review conference. It brought back all sorts of memories. The city has changed so much in the 22 years since that fateful meeting.

Eric arrived from Woods Hole and met us back in our jail hotel where we ate at the basement restaurant 'Scampo' before dropping off Maya for a night wiht Lorna while we went dancing. What a wonderful day we had in Boston!

The city was shrouded in mist and fog when we woke up today. We had a huge yummy brunch and planned to walk to Monica's in the mist, but ventured into the subway instead, where the whole city was on its way to Fenwick Park and the Red Sox game against the Atlanta Braves. We joined them in their journey and found our way to Marlborough Street after a few false moves. From the rooftop we could see the baseball stadium, and then we joined the fans in their march and joined the hawkers and the scalpers selling tickets. It seemed as though all the Bostonians from all walks of life were on their way to the game. We walked on to Emmanuel College ( and passed more colleges, there are more colleges in this town thant anywhere!) and checked on Edouard's new appartment near the school. We were on our way to the Isabel Gardner museum, her own private collection of paintings and objets d'art; quite an amazing collection presented in a house she built to show off her works of art. Remarkable woman. We ran into wild turkeys on our way to the museum, very ugly creatures who appeared aggressive, ready to stike anyone who came too near. I wondered where they came from. The rain and the mist continued all day, never so bad we could not walk, but never letting up either. We saw so much of Boston today. I have decided that we must look for a job here in Boston, being that it is such an interesting and entertaining city. I am adding Boston to our list; Montreal, then Boston.

It was Father's day today, so we celebrated with Thierry and Eric. Thierry received dancing lessons for the occasion. He will have three private ones and three with Monica. What a wonderful idea. I am inspired,and will find a way to get Eric out on the dancefloor far more often. Ecuador is perfect for that I hope! I have bee skyping my parents daily and they are definitely getting ot be more adn more comfortable with the technology. I want them to be 'hooked' so that they keep up with it. Edouard leaves them tomorrow and I am not sure they are ready to handle the iMac on their own. I am certainly hopeful, but it helps to have a knowlegable person around to help them when necessary. My mother prefers the phone, perhaps because seeing each other could jut be too much for her. I am surprised how comfortable I am in being seen anywhere anytime for the videochat. I talked to Karen in Paris today as well as Tara in Italy and my parents in Edmonton, how utterly amazing!

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