Susie already had us packed up and ready to go so after I got off from work we left Westminster Street and drove up to Boston: I-95 to I-93 to US 1 to the Holiday Inn Express in Saugus. Traffic was surprisingly light, probably because of the holiday (Patriot's Day) and we found the hotel with no problem.
After unloading bags and checking in, we found our way in to the North End of Boston (pretty easy, really). Since we arrived about a half hour early we dropped the car off at the valet parking at Mamma Maria’s on North Square (where we had reservations for dinner) and strolled over to Hanover Street. There were lots of people out at the tail end of Patriot’s Day and the running of the Boston Marathon. We checked out the rear end of the Old North Church and then found a place for an aperitif: Nico’s Restaurante and Wine Bar at 417 Hanover st.
From Nico's we walked back to Mamma Maria's for dinner. Seated on the second floor next to the window overlooking the square that is also home to Paul Revere’s house, we had a nice view of a very old part of the city with the new skyscrapers serving as background. A curious juxtaposition of time and space.
Anyway, the service was great and, except for Susan's artichoke starter, the food delicious. In fact, my Bolognonese pasta was nothing short of superb! The singular downside is the high cost: we spent more on that one meal than we did for all four nights of dinners in England.
After picking up our car we tried to make our way back to I-93 north but couldn’t find the on-ramp we needed. After getting turned around for about 10 minutes were were back on US 1 and found the hotel parking garage with no problem. (We’re leaving our car there while we’re in England.) It was back into the hotel, up to the 3rd floor, load up the ice bucket and we hit the sheets. Our flight was scheduled to leave at 8am so we put in a wakeup call for 4:15 so we could catch the 5:15 shuttle to the airport.
The fun was just beginning. . .