12/10/13 – The witching hour

Skyped Mom and Dad this morning. Got to see both Star and Izzy on cam. Izzy’s getting so big! We’re hoping we’ll be able to Skype Nan tomorrow too. Had some pizza for breakfast and it was still so good! Still only eaten half of it between us though – hoping the maids don’t throw it away whilst we’re out! Actually dressed in layers for the first time in forever today. It feels so weird wearing jeans again! But Boston has been the coldest place yet, so we needed to be prepared to head into the heart of the city.

We liked Boston instantly, despite it reminding us weirdly of Birmingham. We walked back and forth through the park a little, which was lovely, and followed part of the Freedom Trail. I’ve been hunting for a city to set my Argo series in during my travels and Boston is currently topping the list. We even found ourselves in a place called McKinley Square (McKinley being the name of my main character) – it must be fate! I’d like to hold off on deciding until the end of the trip though, as I feel San Francisco and Chicago could be contenders too. We got down to the wharf and found out that our whale watching was cancelled because of rough seas. Absolutely gutted! There’s a chance we’ll be able to do it in the morning tomorrow instead, but again it’ll depend on water conditions. Fingers crossed!

Feels scarily like home… Isn’t Pigeon Park just up there?

Kain, you’re famous in Boston! I’m such a proud character momma…

Because our plans were so cocked up we decided to head into Salem earlier so that we could get a good look around. I felt like I was going to a convention. A horror convention. There were so many people dressed up! We even heard someone playing ‘Sally’s Song’ on some kind of wind instrument. Safe to say that’s been stuck in my head since. We saw inside one of the buildings that there was actually a month-long convention going on for the whole of October! That certainly explained a lot. We then went for a late lunch at Thai Place. I’ve never eaten Thai food before but I will most definitely be doing it again! We shared a starter of wonton type things filled with onion, potato and curry powder, served with pineapple sauce. I then had BBQ chicken with steamed rice and sweet chilli sauce. It was all gorgeous! I feel this was an experiment that turned out very successful.

We had a wander around some shops afterwards. There was a Harry Potter themed shop where I was totally tempted to get a golden snitch aerial topper for my car, but then was worried it’d get nicked (oh the woes of living amongst British hooligans). There was a pretty awesome Snape standing outside too. We also visited one of the cemeteries. It’s the second oldest cemetery in America (and also seemingly the most popular – never seen so many live people in a cemetery!) A lot of the grave stones were broken and you couldn’t see the writing anymore. The oldest one we found was from 1790, wow! There also seemed to be a hell of a lot of Abigails back then.

We then finally had our witch walk tour on the evening. By then it had gotten completely dark, which made it even more awesome. Our tour guide Tom looked like Russell Brand and Tim Minchin got together and had a baby. This is by no means a bad thing. He was totally cool – he really knew his stuff (Kay would have been impressed), he was funny, fun to watch and made the whole thing much more interesting than it already was. I even found some of my old knowledge from learning about The Crucible coming back. Tom went into quite a bit of depth on how Salem was never really a home of witches and that it had only happened more recently as it gained popularity for the idea, which I’m sure Kay would have been pleased about.

Me and Kel were the nerds who stuck at the front of the group the whole time (though mostly it was because we got frustrated being stuck behind all the snail people when we were moving from one place to the next. Why do most Americans have no sense of urgency about them?!) At one point Tom even started playing ‘This Is Halloween’ on a little cassette player as we were walking. Needless to say me and Kel were both singing along. An awesome touch! During the witch walk we participated in a Wiccan ritual and also all joined in blessing pieces of rose quartz that we’d be given as a group.

We had a drag of a journey back, consisting of a half hour train ride and then two separate subways. And we got stuck with all the teenies coming out of a Selena Gomez concert (though at least it wasn’t One Direction or I would likely have been forced into punching someone). We were happy to find that our pizza was still in our room and hadn’t been chucked out by the maids, so we had another munch and watched some of Zoolander. I put my rose quartz into my makeup bag, because you’re supposed to keep it in a pink bag to improve your love life. Ha. Good luck, little rose quartz. If you actually work then I promise I’ll turn Wiccan.

The busiest cemetery you’ll ever see! And the only one where there’s more live people than dead.

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