Thursday, July 7, 2016

Welcome to Boston...Yours, Sam Adams

Join me on my six day journey through Boston, Massachusetts and the surrounding area. My purpose was independence, learning, and seeking to experience some of the oldest history of our young nation. Over the next coming posts you can read my anecdotes of this solo trip and learn about the landmarks that you, yourself can visit. 

Boston day one: My morning began at four a.m. when I awoke to drive myself to the airport. Everything went incredibly smooth and couldn't have written it better myself. I'll talk a bit about Spirit, the airline I flew, later on. When I touched down at Logan Airport I had one of the easiest airport experiences of my life. It was just a quick journey out and I was whisked to a free bus that would take me to Boston's South Station, where I could then go anywhere in the city. After 20 minutes I was planning my first moves at 10:30 in the morning. I contemplated going to my hostel first, though I couldn't check in for another five hours. Through I deliberately packed light so I could stand carrying my belongings with me if need be. Feeling a little bit aimless, but a lot a bit determined I decided to just cruise right into Boston-and that's exactly what I did. 

I love Sam Adams beer and am always disappointed from the measly selection I find  locally. Boston Lager, Cherry Wheat, and Oktoberfest are just the smallest tip of on iceberg of this large craft brewer. I had known that Sam Adams beer comes from Boston and planned on taking a brewery tour. I checked my Google Map and learned that this destination was four miles from South Station. I came,  prepared to walk, so I got to stepping. As I exited the building I was stopped by a wall of an idea. Something in me really wanted to try the rental bike station. Hubway is one of the companies supplying bike rental stations, and when I have seen them in big cities before, I've wanted to try it. This was a trip of following my heart, my heart told me I wanted to ride a bike. I hopped on after swiping my card for the $6 per 24-hour fee and tried to rig up some way to both hear my cell phone give me directions and also not lose this crucial lifeline. Being completely unprepared for this, I found the best place to be inside my pants just below my belt line where I could feel the phone buzz when it was time for me to  make a turn. In 85 degree weather I ended up with sweaty screen that was in bad need of a squeegee, but I arrived to Sam Adams unscathed. 

Tours take off every 30 minutes so I paid my $2 donation fee, cooled off, and rested from my ride. Our tour guide was fun and informative. We learned the different types of ingredients that go into making beer, even got to taste the different roasts of barley and do the famous hops test. Tom told us the Sam Adams company story. In particular I learned that the real Sam Adams was a beer brewer himself. The last third of the experience took place in a room with a bar and tables. We were served pitchers of three different beers, family style, to taste in our souvenir  glass which we got to keep.  Tom taught us how to properly taste a beer and things to look for. I learned a lot from this fun time. After finishing my tour and a lap around the gift shop I walked the 1.5 miles to the recommended hot spot for some lunch, an Irish pub called Doyle's Cafe. I sat myself at the bar and quickly formed a small crush on the bartender and realized I had a thing for Boston accents that I never knew about. He was sweet and respectful, so I learned Boston men are charming. I ordered a Sam Adam's Boston Brick Red, on tap, a special beer only available in Boston. I chowed down on a BLT, my trusty standby sandwich. 

After lunch in the midday heat I purchased my only Uber ride of the trip. I was driven to my hostel, The Boston Fenway Inn, where I was renting a bed for $40 per night. This was my first experience with a hostel in the United States and I was very happy with my stay there. I'm not very tough to please and though other people could have found many faults, I was happy to be staying in a place that was economical enough to allow me to take this trip. The bed was comfy and my room mates were great. It had a warm shower and was located in a safe part of town, near public transportation.

Travel details
What: The Sam Adams Brewery
Where: 30 Germania Street, Boston
Cost: $2 donation, with 100% of donations going to charity
Why go: If you love Sam Adams or craft beer in general. An interesting and near free experience in Boston. 

What: The Boston Fenway Inn
Where: 12 Hemingway St, Boston
Cost: Ranges, I paid $40 per night for a four-bed female only dorm.
Why go: Located in a safe neighborhood, just three minutes walk from a subway station. Inexpensive rates, good beds, locker for storage, simple free breakfast.