The layout of the core of Boston defies all logic. As one of my coworkers stated, some guy with a horse went here and then they decided to build a road. This means there are hidden streets, alleys and nooks all over the place.
One such alley near my hotel (Pi Alley) has a no-frills little diner in it called Archie’s Place where you can get a good old fashioned egg and bacon breakfast.
For a few days, I became really tired of eating a gf muffin or a tiny cup of organic oatmeal every day for breakfast. I just wanted something hot that’d stick to my ribs. The porter at my hotel recommended Archie’s. I wouldn’t have found it without his “go to Dunkin Donuts, turn right, walk down an unmarked alley, halfway turn left” instructions. The diner is really tucked away.
Lunch was in Dewey Square… at the food trucks. I think the Greenway gets the better trucks but again, I just wanted something different and mixed in among the food trucks is a farmers market. So, instead of getting a rice bowl, you can get fresh fruit, vegetables, bread, jam, and honey.
At the end of the day, I felt compelled to head over to the North End to explore some more.
Little Italy is my kind of place. It has great food and coffee, eclectic buildings, gads of history, and the thing I love the most: people yelling at each other from the shops, windows, from the bakery, from the meat market, and from the streets. It’s a tight community.
It’s also a highly sought after place to live and apartments can cost upward of $1300 per month per bedroom; a realty office in the middle of Little Italy lists places going for $2700 to $5000 a month.
But it wasn’t always like this. Originally the area was settled by the well off, then the community declined and became the home to immigrant families; Irish and Italian.
So, completely different topic, these little holes along the sides of the North Church are interesting.
I was standing by the church taking some photos by one of the locked gates and a church employee/guide was standing there as well (no tour, he was just standing there).
Guy: What do you suppose those are for, he asked.
Me: They’re to let the gasses out for decomposing bodies, I said. I’m always the life of the party. I assume there’s a crypt in the basement. That’s where all the smells and the gasses from decomposing bodies would have exited the building. It’s a 1700s ventilation system.
Guy: I never knew that. But I’ve always wondered about how they would have dealt with the smell, he said. I’m definitely going to incorporate that into my tours!
Around the church, everyone gets hung up on one night in history, but there’s way more life to this area than what happened in two little windows at the top of a church.
Once again, I found myself down at the harbour watching the sunset.
This time it was at the Battery Wharf, the location of Boston’s seaside defences during the 1600s. The “battery” refers to the cannons that would have been set up at the time.
The cannon went off at 7pm. This time I was prepared for it.
While Little Italy is filled with Italian restaurants, there are other options too. Crudo is a fusion sushi place with plenty of eclectic non-pasta, non-rice fixings.
Here’s some rice-less sushi…
and a seafood ceviche…