• Recounted by Holli

  • A photo of a row team canoeing down the Charles River. The Charles River (sometimes called the River Charles or simply the Charles) is an 80 mi (129 km) long river in eastern Massachusetts. From its source in Hopkinton the river flows in a northeasterly direction (after first coursing due south through Milford), traveling through 23 cities and towns before reaching the Atlantic Ocean at Boston

    I used to blog a lot about how I took my trip to Puerto Rico, and saw the sights. Now it's time to blog about what I saw yesterday around Boston, Massachusetts.

    Yesterday I was truly fortunate to meet a wonderful new friend. His name is Ian. He is completely blind and has been since birth. He is a sweet soul, really lovable, and so laid back.  Like I said it was a true honor to have met him.

    Not only was he super fun, but so smart. He knows the metro stations in and out here in Boston. Not only here in Boston but also New York and Washington, DC. He has them memorized. You could ask him how to get anywhere in the city and he would know the bus routes and the train routes to get you anywhere you wanted to go. I saw first hand this practically psychic feet. Through out our day I continually asked him if he was in face psychic or not. Every time the same answer; no.

    Our first stop landed us in Brighton, Mass. down into Perkins School for the Blind. He showed me around campus, and even introduced me to some of his previous teachers, who like Ian, was a pleasure to meet.

    After chatting we moved along to see the Charles River then continued to walk around Brighton until we made the bus to head into Harvard Square. Once there we sat down for more talking over a cup of Starbucks coffee. A beautiful all wooden Starbucks, with two stories, and made of nothing but windows on one side. Very old looking, and seemingly nestled into the corner by the Metro Train station. After coffee we got lost. We walked in a giant circle, but it was nothing major we found our way back to the train station and hopped on the train to head back into Boston. We stopped in at the Boston malls, and man were these something to behold. Saks Fifth Ave, Tiffany & Co., Coach, Louis Vuitton, Armani and so many more EXPENSIVE stores. Stores that if I had been dressed better I would most definitely entered just to say, "Hey I've been there, and even almost bought something." The only impressive original store I have been to is Gucci in Puerto Rico and I almost did in fact walk out of there with a wallet that I drooled over. But I had a change of heart.

  • The USS Constitution in Boston Harbor. USS Constitution is a wooden-hulled, three-masted heavy frigate of the United States Navy, named by President George Washington after the Constitution of the United States of America. She is the world's oldest commissioned naval vessel afloat. Constitution was launched in 1797, one of six original frigates authorized for construction by the Naval Act of 1794 and the third constructed. Joshua Humphreys designed the frigates to be the young Navy's capital ships, and so Constitution and her sisters were larger and more heavily armed and built than standard frigates of the period. Constitution was built in the North End of Boston, Massachusetts at Edmund Hartt's shipyard. Her first duties with the newly formed U.S. Navy were to provide protection for American merchant shipping during the Quasi-War with France and to defeat the Barbary pirates in the First Barbary War.

    After the malls I was taken back underground by the metro train tracks to what is known as the Commuter Rail. Now I had no idea there were two different rails in the city. Apparently you do in fact learn something new everyday. The Commuter Rail actually travels further out than the regular subway. I think out to Rhode Island. But right beside the commuter train is the Amtrak trains. That as we all know go all over the country. But one hop skip and a jump later we are on the commuter rail just riding around. Now that may no sound impressive but to someone who has never been on something like public transportation other than a cab, this is pretty awesome. Not only that but the train was a double Decker train. Just like a bus, this train had two levels for seating. I was thoroughly impressed.

    Once at the end of the train line for the commuter rail we wound up at the central hub for the trains and big name buses of Boston. We then spontaneously, hopped on a bus to take a tour of the local airport terminals just to kill some time.

    Once done with the airport we caught another train to the docks and one of the many harbors of Boston. This was where we then decided to take a boat ride across the river to Charlestown where the famous USS Constitution calls home.Being as by this time it was sunset I got to see the city in a beautiful array of pink, orange, and yellow golden hues as the sunset behind the tall buildings of the city.

    Off the boat we did something that Ian had never done before. We took a Bike-Taxi to our next bus stop. A little cart pulled by a bike rider while they pedal and pull the cart along. It was a first for me too. It was actually exciting and fun. After the Bike-taxi, we waited for 25 minutes for a bus that we were sure wasn't going to come but after being 20 minutes late it arrived. We rode it back into Brighton past the school for the blind to a little pub named The Last Drop. Once there our day ended with a few rum and cokes, and some of the best Chinese food I have had, which it's left over shall be my lunch.  We hung out, chatted more and finally Christian (my husband) came to pick us up to take me home.

    It was an adventure, fun and exciting, scary, and just down right liberating. Liberating to learn how to use the train, to feel confident, and sure in my abilities to use the public transit system without being scared again.

    If Ian can do it so can I!

  • 1 comment

    Hi Ian and Holli! Great guest post and great story. Ian really does inspire everyone around him to be a bit more brave and a lot more open.