Friday, December 27, 2013

Boston Sight-Seeing

 Today we took my parents sight-seeing in Boston, with our destination being the Boston National Historical Park.  When we walked most of the Freedom Trail in September (with Troy's parents), the girls started working on two Junior Ranger badges.  They wanted to do some more activities in their booklets today.

We spent about two hours exploring the USS Constitution (nicknamed Old Ironsides) and the Constitution museum.  The last time we came, I couldn't board the ship because I had left my driver's license at home, and everyone else wasn't able to go below the top deck.  Well, I made sure to bring my driver's license this time, and we were able to visit the two lower decks as part of a tour.  We started out by checking out some of the guns on the top deck.
 And then we were below-deck.
 We learned some sailor lingo, like what a scuttle-butt is.  Scuttle means to alter an object so that you cannot use it for its original purpose any more.  This barrel (aka a "butt") had a square cut into it, which is what the sailors kept their drinkable water in.  We also saw the sleeping quarters of the shipmen and learned there was only one cook for 450 men.
 After seeing the USS Constitution in the Navy Yard, we took a water ferry to Long Wharf, which is just a few blocks east of our next destination - Faneuil Hall.  'Tis the season for monster Christmas trees in various cities, and Boston is no exception.  Troy took a picture of me with Julia, Evelyn and my dad at the base of the Faneuil Hall tree.  That sucker was huge!
 After eating lunch inside the hectic, crowded Quincy Market (or the Colonnade, as some people call it), we visited Faneuil Hall.  This is where Bostonians met to plan all sorts of rebellious acts against the British before the Revolutionary War.  The Great Hall - where these people met - was on the second floor, and there was a market with stalls for various vendors on the first floor.  Faneuil wanted a market for ideas on the second floor and a market for goods and products on the first floor.
 Even though a guy named Faneuil came up with the idea of the building, Samuel Adams (the statue in the picture below) played an integral part in the meetings and setting up boycotts against the British.  The girls did three more activities in their Junior Ranger booklets today, and I think we will need two more trips into Boston to complete the badges.