a full day in boston

Never let it be said that we don't take an opportunity and make a full day of it. 

We were up early and had breakfast the hotel.  Whenever I come to Boston, I stay at XV Beacon.  Love the hotel, the rooms, the service, the whole thing.  Not a detail has been missed.  The restaurant is called Mooo.  Although that might be a detail they overlooked…the name is ridiculous. 

Jumped in the car and drove out to Tufts for the info/tour.  One thing that appears to be more important these days is each institutions interest with the whole person.  The data is obvious but what isn't obvious is who you are and that is uncovered through essays and activities.  It is good to hear that because there is so much stress and effort poured into the achievement tests that sometimes I wonder if something gets lost in translation.  I get the reason for the tests but I still find the whole process disconcerting.  Although the schools are trying to sell you there is an underlying fear that you might not get in even though you are qualified and that is the part that truly sucks.  It wasn't like that as much when I was growing up. 

I continue to be blown away by the intensity of the parents.  Out of the small group looking at the school this morning, two of the kids were sophomores and those were the two sets of parents that were freaking. Sophomores…seriously?  You could see if in their eyes and by the questions that they asked.  It is truly an insane process.  Even the other day I was on the phone with a mother who has 3 young kids under 6 years old and she wanted to know how Jessica liked Wesleyan.  I said she loved it, a match made in heaven.  She came back with, is she getting good grades?  My gut reaction although I didn't say it was..good grades, are you serious?  She is happy, she got to a place that is right for her, she is succeeding, she is enjoying the intellectual conversations that take place at college, she is partying hearty and why are we so concerned still with her grades?  She is an adult, she knows what she has to do to go where she wants to go.  LET GO!

After Tufts, we drove back into Boston and lunched on Newbury Street.  Newbury Street doesn't seem as unique and elegant as it was when I lived there.  I was particularly sad to see that Louis of Boston closed.  That big beautiful piece of real estate got too much to keep up.  I hope that piece of property is land marked.  A gorgeous old huge home that must have an interesting history.

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We decided that we should check out other parts of the city.  Fred went to MIT and I went to Simmons.  We met when I lived in his fraternity house at MIT.  119 Bay State Road at Beta Theta Pi.  An unbelievable brownstone occupied by MIT students and completely trashed.  They also own an annex across the street.  Emily and I managed to get someone to answer the door and let us in. 

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We walked up to fourth rear where Fred and I lived one summer.  A bit different but not much.   Those windows look over the Charles River.  I swear our room was much better organized and probably cleaner.

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On the wall is a photo of the people that lived in the house in the year of 1982.  Fred is in the picture.  Emily got up on a chair to take a picture.  It was really fun to wander around with her.  Funny thing is the house still smelled the same.  It is so weird how smells bring you back. 

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Our next stop was driving around MIT and Harvard.    Quickly stopping to get a frozen yogurt and a Harvard sweatshirt, we
continued on our journey. We didn't get over to Simmons due to lack of time.  The city has really expanded since I lived there.  Areas that were scary are now up and coming.  

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Our last stop of the day was at Louis of Boston's new location.  They are located on the waterfront in an area that has barely been developed.  The building is very cool and modern.  They have pared down on their selection of clothes and have done a great job of drilling down on who their customer is.  In many ways, although the store is off the beaten track, they are a destination location for the customers in Boston.  Not many stores carry what they carry. 

We got back to the hotel at 630 for a 7pm dinner reservation.  Just enough time to drop our bags, wash up and head out again. 

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