Family! That word is powerful, for it’s how we grow, and how we ‘become’. It is our source of support and extended love, even though it can be tumultuous at times.
I tell my preschool class that we are a family, because we are. I share my own family stories. I’ll be sharing today’s events with them, too. They are filled with adventure, worry, help, wonder, and sticking together. That’s what we do at school as a family, and that’s what I did with my family.
Our daughter and grandchildren arrived from the west coast.
It’s been over a year.
Today we went into Boston. The New England Aquarium was #1 on the list. Riding the train and taking the subway was #2. It was not easy. Navigating Boston’s commuter rail system is not for the faint of heart. The first stop was the train station.
All the train lines are purple.
At last we arrived at North Station in Boston. It’s the central location where every subway line connects. In Boston it’s called the T, not the subway. This is where we felt alone and a little worried. Hey, I’ve ridden the T, but when you’re at the hub of all the connecting lines, it is very daunting.
We figured it out. Of course! That’s what families do. The ticket to get onto the T is a Charlie Card. My goodness, I didn’t know Charlie Cards were still around.
When I was a teenager and played the ukulele, everybody’s favorite song was M.T.A. by the Kingston Trio. The song is about a man named Charlie and riding the M.T.A. in Boston. Today the cards are named for Charlie. And people call the M.T.A. the T.
We were on the Orange Line and needed to connect to the Blue Line. Does that statement alone make you feel a little stressed or worried? As soon as we got off the Orange Line, we followed the path… yet there was no Blue Line. We ended up outside on the street. For those of you who have never been to Boston, the city is a wonderful mix of old and new. The streets are narrow and winding, the opposite of cities with streets built on a grid.
Our goal, our destination, was the New England Aquarium. We had an address, but GPS walking directions were terrible. It’s been ages since I walked around the center of Boston. We felt very alone, a teeny bit worried, and just needed a good map; a fold-out map that shows where you are in relation to everything else. Why doesn’t everyone realize this is a golden tool?
Someone saw us and must have realized we needed help. Yes, good people are everywhere. Really. A point in the right direction and we were on our way. Walking in Boston was delightful, once we (kind of) knew where we were going.
We arrived at the New England Aquarium. It is world famous in teaching about ocean life, and their animal rescues. Outside the museum are pools of sea lions, tanks of sharks, and more. Inside the museum is the exhibit of penguins in a natural habitat.
They swim, dive, climb rocks, spar with other penguins, and more.
Then comes the main exhibit, a gigantic round fish tank that is the central part of the aquarium. People walk up and around the tank, watching fish that live on the ocean floor, to watching fish that live close to the surface.
There are many individual tanks of ocean life.
The old tortoise at the top of the big tank made me smile,
I wanted to watch him for hours.
This was my favorite.
Family is always an adventure, ups and downs, laughs and tears. It’s a good thing that love is the glue.
That looks like the perfect ‘family day out’, Jennie. Making memories for the years to come.
Best wishes, Pete.
It was, in spite of getting a little lost and a bit panicky. Oh, lunch at North Station for 4 of us which was very simple (chicken fingers, hot dogs, no drinks except water) was $84.00. Yikes! The Aquarium is truly a must see for anyone. Best to you, Pete.
City prices are spiralling, Jennie. It would be the same in London. Even here in Norfolk, it can cost Julie almost £100 to take her grandchildren to the Zoo, + buy lunch and a few extra treats.
Best wishes, Pete.
Wow! I guess I’m not surprised. Best to you, Pete.
Hurrah for you and your family taking public transportation and then getting a little bit of help en route to the aquarium!
Aren’t you proud of me for being so brave? I haven’t walked the streets of Boston in ages, so it was a good thing that we couldn’t find the Blue Line and walked to the Aquarium. It is a beautiful city, and I love the old architecture. There was a guy with a tri-cornered hat and in period costume in front of the State House giving a presentation/tour. That was fun. Have you been to North Station recently? Wow! Best to you, Will.
And when you grow up in a large family, you experience the entire gamut of emotions: stress, happiness, anger, reconciliation, and in the end, love. Wonderful adventure and pictures, Jennie. Thanks for sharing.
Yes, you experience it all in a big family. I think love is the glue, or maybe it’s the final coat of paint. Thanks, Steve. I’m glad you enjoyed this.
Wonderful. Lived in Boston for many years. Once you know T it is one of the easiest transportation. Quincy market and Boston commons were our favorites. Glad you had a great day.
I know what you mean, and your two stops are great ones. It had been a long time since I rode the T. The next time will be much easier. I can’t believe they still have Charlie Cards- so cool. Many thanks!
A grand day out, and your daughter is very beautiful.
Thank you, FR. It certainly was a grand day, and yes she is. 🙂
Would love to visit Boston someday. I love trains! Thanks for posting!
I hope you get to visit one day. I love trains, especially the old steam ones from my childhood in West Virginia. Many thanks!
Looks like you had a brilliant day out with your family. I agree, that old tortoise would capture my attention too
I did, Brenda. Thank you. Yes, that old tortoise warmed my heart.
Lovely post! Enjoyed that outing with you and family!
I’m so glad. Thank you!
Fantastic! Family is everything and love, indeed, is what it’s all about. Wishing you and yours (at home and at school) a blessed and beautiful Christmas and New Year, Jennie! 🎄💞
Thank you, Bette. Yes, family is everything. My very best to you and yours for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. ❤️🎄
Family. It what makes our world go round.
And Boston…what a town. I spent a month there doing the Leonard Nimoy show, his home town; and I explored that wonderful city every chance I got. So rich in history and beauty.
Well said, Don. Family really does make our world go round. Boston is a wonderful city. I love the history and architecture. What a treat you were there for a month. Leonard Nimoy- wow! I didn’t know Boston was his home town. Many thanks!
Leonard’s folks immigrated there when they escaped an anti-Jewish purge in the Ukraine.
His dad, Max, was a barber, and one of the funniest persons I have ever met. Andd his mom …what a cook..
What a story, Don! Thanks for telling me. This could be a blog post…just sayin’
It is two of my posts, Jennie.
Don, I never miss your posts. I think I wasn’t following you back then, or I should say I hadn’t yet found you. I’m very much looking forward to reading these. Right now I’m getting ready to read your Urban Cowboy post. Yahoo!
looks like you all had a great outing Jennie! The fish were fun to watch!
We did! And, I knew you would love the fish. I was transfixed in front of the tank. Thank you, Wayne.
I’ve felt that worry in the big Metro, Tube, and Subway stations in France, England, and NYC. I’m glad you had a helping Angel come by to get your on way to the Aquarium. It looks like a fantastic place.
I hope you all have a wonderful visit and Christmas together.
It is a little scary, Deborah. I would think it’s a worse feeling on public transportation out of the country. You did it! The Boston Angel was such a gift. Whew! The Aquarium is fantastic, I hope you get there one day. If you come with the grandies, please let me know, I’ll be there. 😀
We had an absolutely wonderful visit, Deborah!! Best to you.
Worse in France because my French isn’t that great but, once you get the right direction you’re meant to be going finding that train is easier. Thankfully, I found all the subway systems run the same so I had more confidence with the other two systems.
Way to go! The language certainly is a barrier.
Jennie, I laughed so hard at “…the opposite of cities with streets built on a grid.” The only thing worse than trying to figure out the T is trying to figure out what to do when you emerge from the tunnels. The only thing worse than both of those is trying to drive in, park and walk.
You have a lovely family!
Yes! Yes! Yes! Emerge from the Orange Line tunnel onto the street with no way to connect to the Blue Line, and (drum roll), you have no idea where you are. 😳 Thank you, Dan. I’m glad this made you laugh, and I’m glad you can relate. Your kind words are appreciated.
Thanks for taking us along. Yes, I have had that feeling navigating around cities. I hope your family is enjoying the trip. I love Boston.
I’m glad you enjoyed the visit, John. Navigating in my 20’s and 30’s was actually fun. Hmmm… The family had a wonderful trip. They’re now back home in Bend, Oregon. I do love Boston, yet I like living out of the city in apple orchard country with Boston close by.
I don’t blame you. I loved New York but lived in Connecticut on the main line. Nice access but quiet living.
Much more my cup of tea, too.
Ha ha ha
Certainly a great day out for all of you, Jennie. I learned something new about that CharlieCard…that’s a cool story how that came to be. The aquarium is always a great place to visit and tour about. So many sights to experience there, enjoying some of nature’s finest.
It was great day. I was shocked when I got my CharlieCard, thinking it had been long gone as a ticket for the T. It made my day, and of course the Kingston Trio’s song still hasn’t left my head. Yes, the Aquarium is outstanding. You are right that some of the finest in nature is right there. Just typing this reminds me of the tank of dwarf seahorses. They are maybe an inch. Nature is a wonder!
Oh, what fun! Family is everything, Jennie 🤗
Yes, and yes! Thanks, Ritu! 🙂
Well done, funny how every city and country has it’s own name for underground trains. For regulars it’s easy, but if you’re a visitor or occasional you really have to concentrate. We had some challenges on the Paris Metro.
Looks like a lot of fun! I’ve always said that we have more than one family in our lives: the one we are born into and the ones that we create.
You are so right about our families. It was a lot of fun!
congrats on successfully navigating Boston’s public transit system. and it sounds like you had a wonderful day with family!
Thanks, Jim! It was a wonderful day.
Hi Jennie, this looks like a wonderful aquarium. I am always anxious using the London underground when I have to change lines. It is always like a madhouse and it is disconcerting when you are unsure.
Hi Robbie, the Aquarium is one of the best. I’m glad I’m not alone feeling worried when taking public transportation. I imagine London is just as busy as Boston.
Wonderful, Jennie, so lovely you shared such adventures with your lovely family.. I hope you have a wonderful family gathering and more joy and laughter… Enjoy your weekend ❤
Thank you, Sue. It was wonderful to spend time with family. My very best to you! 🙂
How wonderful that your family was able to come for a visit. I am guessing they will be staying for the holidays. What great pictures and videos of your trip.
Thank you, Carla. They were here for five wonderful days. I’m glad you enjoyed the pictures and videos.
Nothing like a family adventure, even if you get a bit lost. Looks like a fun time!
You are so right, Darlene! And, it was really fun.
Boston looks a lovely city, Jennie. Thanks for sharing.
I’m reminded of my first solo trip on the T. I went to the wrong stop. Couldn’t match up the street network to the T lines. Eventually got it straightened out, after boarding another line and going the wrong way.
And the nicest thing about the commuter rail is that in Ayer it hooks right up with the rail trail into Groton!
Yes! It’s a great journey once we figure out the connections. Next time I’m taking a hard copy map. I need to see where I am in the contest of everything else. Best to you, Brian.
And to you, too!
What a beautiful family memory you have made again Jennie. The photos are magnificent. ❤
Thank you so much, Debby! 💕
My goodness what a grand ol’ time! Love spending time with family! I’ve always wanted to visit Boston!! 🙂
Yes! It’s a great city, Jen. I do hope you get there one day. 😀