We watched the weather forecasts all week and hoped for the best, for there aren't many trips offered in February and 86 people were signed up for the February Mystery Trip. We needed a remedy for Cabin Fever! Sunny and cold was the final forecast. We'll take it! We departed at 8:00 AM with Randall working on Coach 1500 and Judy Fortin leading Coach 1400. Everybody was ready for a good day! As the coaches rolled away from Lizak Bus Service, itineraries were handed out revealing Boston as our destination. After a brief rest stop, we arrived at Quincy Market where we picked up our two local guides for the day - Steve and Vincent.
Each coach followed a separate itinerary, but our morning schedule mostly made stops on the Freedom Trail including the Tea Party Ships, The U.S.S. Constitution, the North End with Paul Revere's House, his statue, and the Old North Church. We then walked up toward Copp's Hill Burial Ground and met our coach down by the skating rink. We made a quick stop at Boston Garden, drove through the Boston Public Garden, past the State House, and some of the grandest townhouses of the Back Bay and then headed for our restaurant.
Maggiano's is over by Park Square and specializes in classic Italian cuisine. The restaurant had reserved a wonderful dining room for us on the lower level complete with a dozen round tables for eight and a bar. Everybody was impressed with the menu and the service was astounding. Food was good and there was so much of it! Look at this menu!
After our hearty lunch we re-boarded our coaches and headed for Cambridge, taking in some of the Olmstead Parks surrounding the Fens. We stopped at Fenway Park and then made a bee-line for Cambridge and another thirty minute walk around Harvard University. Our guide was great and told us all sorts of facts about the oldest university in North America. He showed us Harvard Yard, told us about the statue of its founder, John Harvard, and posed for photos with us in front of the Widener Library. As the afternoon waned, the sun disappeared and the temperature dropped. It felt like snow was on its way.
The coaches next headed for Quincy Market where we said goodbye to our guides and took an hour and a half of free time to visit the Marketplace and check out the Haymarket. The shopping for fresh vegetables and fruits was cold work, but the bargains were incredible. Among the specialties for sale were tiny fingerling potatoes at 3 pounds for a dollar, globe artichokes at 2 for a dollar, and strawberries for fifty cents per container. The avocados weren't badly priced, either. Many of us toddled back to the coach with arms full of produce. A good time was had by all.