The majority of my blogs have been about places I’ve travelled, things I’ve experienced away from my ‘home’ in the US, and concerts I’ve been to, but I’ve neglected to blog much about my day-to-day life and experiences here in Boston.
My daily life isn’t overly exciting. I spend 8-10 hours a day looking after the kids, sometimes I eat out, and the majority of evenings I spend in my room watching TV or working on uni assignments. My weekends are much the same if I don’t go away – shopping, eating, TV, movies, uni work.
But last weekend, I took the weekend off uni work.
Friday night I took my host mom to see The Hunger Games as her birthday present. We went to a 9:40 session, when the kids were in bed, and went a little early to get seats. Because we pre-bought the tickets, there were a lot of teenagers, and even people with Hungers Games sweatshirts. I haven’t read the books, so I relied on my HM (who has read the books) to explain the things I didn’t understand. I found the movie weird, gory, and a bit scary at times (I remember at least 2 occasions where I screamed and hid in my hoodie).
I shouldn’t have, but everything to do with uni work was overwhelming me, and when I got an invitation to go into Boston on Saturday, I couldn’t refuse. Boston College and Emerson College were playing a Quidditch game at Boston Common, so Simone, Maria and I went in to watch. Yes, go back and re-read that if you like, I did, in fact, say Quidditch, the sport of Harry Potter. Apparently it is no longer confined to the wizarding world, and muggles all over the globe are indulging in this interesting pastime. There is even an International Quidditch Association with an official Rulebook. Go figure.
The funny thing about living in the Boston area is that I know a bunch of people who I went to training school with, or who I have met through other au pairs, but rarely do I see these people. They might only live 30 or 45 minutes away, but with the hours I work, and the things I have to do, I (unfortunately) don’t spend my weekends galavanting across Mass. to catch up with friends from the training school, so it’s nice when we are able to (unexpectedly) meet in the middle. My friends Ugo and Verena, who make up the other two-thirds of the slightly disruptive trio from our training school class, both showed up at the Common to watch the Quidditch game. YAY. The reunion was a loud one, with lots of hugging (and cheek kissing). And that’s when the adventures begun.
Before Verena and her friend showed up, we’d been sitting on this big grate/vent that vented up from the underground parking lot, and Maria had made note that we should be careful to not drop anything down it, as it was deep, and seemingly inaccessible. So, being VERY carefully with my iPhone (which was just a little smaller than the holes into the grate, making it very possible that it could fall down there), we managed to avoid dropping anything down there. That is, until we start comparing rings, and Verena decides to take one of hers off… and then drops it down the grate. It was like it all happened in slow motion – the ring fell from her hand, and fell. Ugo tried to catch it, and looks of horror must have crossed all 6 of our faces as it fell 2 metres onto a slab of cement, bounced off with a ‘ding’ and landed in a pile of leaves. Greeaaaaat. And this is not just any ring. This is Verena’s DEAD grandmothers wedding ring. Ouch.
So, we do what anyone who drops a piece of metal down a 4 metre deep grate does. We ask Siri where we can find a hardware store, and go on a hunt for a magnet, and a long piece of string… until we are thwarted in the hardware store by a clerk who informs us that gold wedding rings are not magnetic (I said that, but nobody would listen to me…). Thankfully, when we explained what happened to the girl, she told us where we could find the park rangers, and long story short, after we found the park ranger, he found the parking lot security, who took Verena and I into a secret doorway that led underneath the grate, and the ring was saved!
So, after that we were all hungry, and with a little persuading, we jumped in 2 cabs and headed to South Boston to KO Pies & Catering, an Australian café with, you guessed it, pies! The excitement of being there was a little too much for me, haha. I got a sausage roll, and everyone else got something too. Some had pies, some had sausage rolls… and a couple had an Anzac biscuit and a lamington. Mmm lamingtons. They also had a few Aussie grocery items, so I got a Crunchie and a little bag of Minties. A little taste of home was a nice touch to the day, and the guy that owns the place is an Aussie and it was great to hear an accent too. I also bought a frozen pie to bring home and stash in the freezer for an emergency!
Next, we hopped on the T back into Boston, and somehow along the way we decided that instead of going back into Boston, we would stay on the T all the way back to Alewife, and go to Simone’s house instead.
In between this, my host family invited me to go out to dinner with them, since my host dad’s mom was visiting from Canada, so I went along to the 99 with them. Dinner didn’t really turn out the way it should have, because Miss 3 got a stomach ache just as we got there, and my host mom had to take her home early (she ended up having a stomach bug and spent the next 2 days sick… poor baby, and my poor host mom who got thrown up on, not once, but twice).
Then, even though I didn’t really feel like it, I picked up Maria and we went to the ‘party’ at Simones house. A 6 person party. Which, I must say, was pretty fun! I’m not really a party person. It’s not that I’m anti-social, but I don’t really like drunk people. I don’t like loud music (unless it’s Taylor Swift or Hanson, haha). So I don’t really like parties. But, we had a good time.
I’ve never seen anyone poor vodka over a bowl of chopped up watermelon. Actually, I’ve never seen a 2 litre bottle of Vodka!! I’ve never played a drinking game with a glass of orange juice (since I was driving). I’ve never seen a girl who hates dogs suddenly chasing one around the house when she gets a little bit of alcohol into her. We did this German NYE tradition where you melt a little bit of metal and then pour it into a bowl of cold water, and then you get a fortune from whatever it looks like. Mine looked like a fetus. Haha. And so, my original intent to stay until 10:30pm dragged on, and I finally left about 1am, more so due to tiredness, and needing to be up to do things the next day, than anything else!
Sunday I was able to sleep in, and then headed out with Maria to see a local production of ‘Oliver!’ the musical. A handful of you who have known me most of my life will know that I have a little ‘thing’ for Oliver! – in Year 7 my school did the musical, and I had 2 small roles in it, as well as a large role in making what seemed like a million of programs with my class teacher, Miss Low, who was in charge of the promotions for the play.
It was a really good show – it was interesting to see Americans doing British accents (a little harder than for New Zealanders trying to do them) and I thought the young actors did a great job – Oliver was played by a 6th grade boy with such a sweet voice. The adult cast was great as well, and the whole thing pulled on that little desire that I have always had to be in another musical.
We got to the parking lot to realize that I had left the lights in the car on, and flattened the battery, AGAIN. This happened once before back in January, and only a few days before my host dad had done the same thing, with the same car, at his work, so I didn’t feel like too much of a fool. Thankfully, because of the first battery flattening incident, my host dad has stashed a pair of jumper cables in the back of the car, and we were able to find a lovely couple to give us a jump.
Afterwards, we headed to the mall to kill some time between the end of the play and our LCC meeting that night, which was ice skating.
Ice skating was a bit of a drama. Our LCC’s (3 groups all together) had rented out a rink just for us – but were never told that the place only had about 40 pairs of skates between ladies sizes 7-10 – and there were about a hundred of us. In Australia you would never have a problem like this, but in America, especially in the North East, a lot of people own their own skates.
So, we had to sit out for the first 40 minutes, and contemplated just leaving. Finally some people finished skating and gave us their skates – and I skated for about 20 minutes before my ankles hurt and we gave up.
Afterwards we went to Pinkberry for froyo! Now I’ve always been a little suspicious of Pinkberry, being a Sweet Cece’s lover, since all my Sweet Cece’s loving friends have gone on and on about it being so much better than Pinkberry… but I was sweetly (no pun intended) surprised. The Original Tart flavor was yummy, and I paired it with fresh fruit, granola and chocolate chips. Yum.
The weekend was a long one, and a fun one. I didn’t do any uni work. I lacked sleep a little. I resisted alcohol (not hard) and didn’t resist froyo. But most of all, I hung out with people I like, and I had fun.