I have a confession to make: I was a New England virgin. My travels have spanned halfway across the globe, but never to the northeast of my own country and never to one of the coveted Ivy League schools. My birthday fell on Memorial Day weekend, and I decided for my present, it had to be official: I was going to Harvard. Well, maybe I wasn’t going to get into Harvard, but I could at least physically locate myself to Boston and live out a Legally Blonde captioned experience.
What amused me most about Boston was the juxtaposition of exceptionally old and historic buildings with incredibly new and innovative additions. In one photo, I captured the Old State House (built in 1713) where the Declaration of Independence was first read to the citizens of Boston, as well as Exchange Place (originally built as 12 floors in 1896 as the Boston Stock Exchange) where a 1985 modern skyscraper houses lawyers and advertising firms. We walked through Faneuil Hall (built in 1743) and Quincy Market (built in 1824) with Sephora and a pop-up promotional display for Samsung within the same view.
Enough history talk. I was primarily channeling Elle Woods as I sat in Tatte watching Harvard students walk by. I envisioned myself finding my name listed for a great internship, shouting at the top of my lungs, and then sitting at Tatte eating North African shakshuka with sesame bread. Okay, maybe shakshuka didn’t exactly scream Elle Woods, but it was absolutely delicious, and brunch will never be the same for me.
Continuing along the lines of food, Saltie Girl fulfilled all of my northeastern seafood dreams. An array of oysters (the Beausoleil were best), King Salmon crudo, and tinned Spanish Bonito tuna (yes, tinned, not “canned.” This was no Chicken of the Sea) were washed down with a prickly pear tequila beverage worthy of a tiki mug, but aptly in a fish-shaped vessel.
A visit to Fenway Park seemed like a requirement of seeing Boston, and the 106 year old ball park did not disappoint my mom nor me (that’s my mom, by the way). In addition to the tokens of history scattered through the concourses, a rooftop garden is nestled on top of the front office. Organic greens, strawberries, carrots, and herbs are used at the EMC Club restaurant within the park.
One of the best parts of Boston was exploring the neighborhoods and spring foliage. Irises and rhododendron were in perfect bloom and complimented the historic homes. It felt like walking through a storybook.
Before I departed, I couldn’t resisted going to one more highly acclaimed school: Massachusetts Institute of Technology. I strolled hallways and read bulletin boards wondering what it would be like to be part of the 7% of applicants that attends the school. I must have been convincing, because a news reporter stopped me to ask my opinions as a student about a current issue. I couldn’t help but think I looked like the Elle Woods of MIT walking around in a floral circle skirt and ruffled socks.