Trip report-Part 2
Sing it with me people: “You leave the Pennsylvania Station bout a quarter to four, read a magazine and then you’re in Baltimore. Dinner in the diner, nothing could be finer than to have your ham and eggs in Carolina.”
OK, not exactly. The train left at 10:03AM and we were going to Boston. It was the Acela so we did have business class and thank god were not on another plane. We ended up in the “quiet car” which worked out nicely. I had grabbed a Dunkin’ Donut as sustenance for the trip.
Have I mentioned how much I love Dunkin’ Donuts? Do you know we don’t have any in San Francisco? So while I had access, I was certainly planning to take advantage.
I was still struggling with U which was due that night (I think). I’d definitely settled on my U2 idea and was slightly worried about it. I know that some of you are still queasy about the whole RPF thing in general, but at least by this time I think my Hugh&Bobby (and Stephen) sound plausible even if the stories are completely actionable. Bono, I was creating out of thin air and a few interviews and trying not to step on any toes, savemoony, for instance. So I put on my iPod and listened to all the U2 I had and about an hour out of Boston, I woke up, got out the laptop I’d decided to schlep in the carry-on and wrote the whole thing. Whew.
Regina was waiting for us outside the South Street station, although it took a few more calls between her and hubby, who was in charge of communications because of my leaving the cell phone home on Day 1, to get us all together and in her car, with the oldies station blaring rather loudly.
A bit of background on Regina:
She’s my oldest friend. We’ve been together longer than me and bff Jennifer. I’ve know her since I moved to Fair Lawn NJ in the 3rd grade. We’ve been friends on and off, including my “born again Christian” period, where she was involved in something similar through the Catholic Charismatic movement.
The thing you really need to know about Regina is that she’s got seven kids. That’s right, seven. Oh and she’s gay. But she didn’t know that, or at least admit to herself until after #7 was born. And before that she was a hard-core, right-wing, born-again, Bill and Hillary hating, Christian Republican who was home-schooling the seven kids.
Around 1998, I decided that our mutual love of Barry Manilow was not enough to over-come the chasm between us on virtually everything else. So we didn’t talk for about five years.
And then one day, I got this email. Hi…I’m great….blah blah…kids…kids…kids…blah, blah, blah,…oh and I think I’m gay.
The last three years have involved quite a bit of drama including threats of murder/suicide/divorce, the kids finding out, her parents finding out and then of course trying to have your first “real” relationship at the age of 40.
Now, she’s totally out, has a new girlfriend, finally getting a divorce, although no one’s actually moving out of the house. The kids are all in public school and the oldest one, who (surprise) turned out to be a little, homophobic Christian Soldier is out of the house and on her own.
She’s totally adorable, totally manic, happy to see us and immediately gets lost driving around the craziness that is downtown Boston looking for our hotel, which is right next to Quincy Market.
Regina dropped us off at the Millennium Boston so we could check in, but the room wasn’t ready yet, so we checked luggage and went outside to wait some more. She had found a parking place. We went to Quincy market and walked and walked, then sat down to nosh and talk about EVERYTHING!!! I was trying to not eat too much because I knew we were getting together with her girlfriend for dinner and I wanted to save hunger for that.
We went to the New England Aquarium I hate zoos, but I love aquariums. Is that hypocritical? Nothing is as awesome as Monterey Bay Aquarium (Sea Otters!) but New England has a fabulous, open penguin exhibit and pretty much the only thing cuter than sea otters would have to be penguins. I was rather disappointed by the lack of tap-dancing, but they were insanely cute, mostly adelies, from what I could tell, no emperors, but there was a little colony of the rock-hoppers in a corner. Cuuuuuttttteeeeee. And a great Jellyfish exhibit, although they weren’t singing reggae.
Afterwards, we got our stuff up to the hotel room, which wasn’t free, but if you know what that place costs, I had a really good rate at. Except for that much money you’d think-FREE WIFI? You’d be wrong. So I’m crawling around hooking up wires, doing the usual freak out, trying to get on-line. Luckily the room was sort of a suite with a sofa for Regina to hang out on while I did that until it was time to meet Debbie.
Debbie was instantly likeable. Sort of generic “soft-butch” which is actually a little more fem than Regina usually likes. Very friendly. Her and Regina were very huggy-kissy, lovey-dovey (poop love as House would say), but it was nice to see her so happy after the turmoil causing, hysterical crying phone-call relationships, she’s already been through as part of this process, include the emotionally abusive psycho-bitch and the girlfriend who already has a girlfriend.
So we walkwalkwalked, mostly around the North End, which is Boston’s “Little Italy/North Beach” area. Really nice. It was a warm, beautiful night. There’s this amazing looking bridge called the Zakim Bridge, , which we got some nice shots of. We saw guys playing bocce ball by the river and walkwalkwalked some more until we settled on a place for dinner.
Regina liked the look of Ristorante Saraceno because it had “atmosphere.”
It was really nice, especially the downstairs part where we ate. Good Italian food. After dinner, more walkwalkwalking all the way to Boston Common and Boston Garden and the ducklings. (Not those ducklings.) Then we walkwalkwalked back to the hotel so Regina and Debra could get back to their respective cars before parking ran out. Also, maybe have some time away from us since Monday is one of their “together” nights and they were giving up some of that to be with us.
Naturally my first move on getting back to the hotel was getting on line, posting and chatting with Carol, all the while telling hubby, “I’ll be right there.”
Eventually I was.
Coming up next: aithlyn, Salem and Karaoke in Beverly!