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August 3rd 2014
Published: August 6th 2014
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Prudential ViewPrudential ViewPrudential View

The view from the Prudential Building viewing gallery.
Here's a question! At a self-service buffet breakfast that is included in the cost of the hotel room, how much are you supposed to tip the waiters, as they clearly expect a tip? After we had probably upset all the hotel staff, again, we headed out of the hotel to catch the hop-on, hop-off trolley.

We had bought all our tickets in advance (along with several of the other things that we wanted to do) so we thought it would be a case of just getting on it. Alas not. First of all there are several trolley services and it seemed that everyone we tried was the wrong one. Then you have to get the vouchers converted into tickets before you can get on the trolley and there are only limited places where that can be done. We had spent loads of time yesterday being sent round in circles trying to find out where to do that, but today we knew exactly where to go, so that was sorted.

We hopped on and then hopped off again at the Aquarium. There were some minor diversions required as apparently there was a Puerto Rican parade going through the city today.
John Hancock TowerJohn Hancock TowerJohn Hancock Tower

Reflections in the John Hancock Tower.
The trolley covered much of the city including the key historical area, and also went over the Charles River to Cambridge where it went through the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

We had a quick snack for lunch. One of the good things about Boston, is that there is not a Starbucks and/or McDonalds on every single sodding corner. That said, what it does have on every corner is a Dunkin Donuts, which apparently originated from Boston. Apparently there are 1,000 in the Greater Boston area, which sounds like overkill even by Starbucks standards.

Something else that originated from Boston was the Duck Tour, so that had to be done. After yet more history, interjected by shouting "Quack" at random people that we passed, and a loop on the Charles River we finished at the Prudential Building to go to the observation deck on the 50th floor. The Duck Tour driver had said it had excellent views, with loads of room and no queues, and he was right. The observation deck is massive and there were very few people, meaning that you easily walk around and you don't need to fight your way through to the windows.


The Cheers Bar.
went back via the Cheers bar, which is just alongside Boston Common, as sometimes you want to go where everybody knows you name and they're always glad you came. The actual bar and the stairs are a lot smaller than the one in the TV show, which was actually a set in Los Angeles. There is however now another bar / restaurant upstairs, which is set-out like the one in the show, along with a Cheers gift shop.

If was then off to Fenway Park for the Boston Red Sox versus the New York Yankees baseball game, which we were able to get some tickets for. Before the game, everyone sung the Star-Spangled Banner and an army veteran threw the ceremonial first pitch. The patriotism played out through-out the game, particularly in respect to some other veterans or people who had given services to the community. Rather than being a turn-off for us, it all made us think that we definitely need more of that in the UK. It all added to the atmosphere of the occasion.

The atmosphere was fantastic. It was nothing like a UK football game; no swearing, no shouting at the ref, no obscene
Fenway ParkFenway ParkFenway Park

The home ground of the Boston Red Sox before the start of the game.
chanting. It was full of families, despite it being late in the evening.

There were three massive screens with all sorts of information: player profiles, photos, information, loads and loads of figures and statistics all of which made absolutely no sense to us what so ever, and, of course, adds. The one thing that seemed to be missing was the score. We asked someone and they pointed to a tiny row of numbers on a tiny display in amongst the seats.

We knew nothing about baseball, so the poor guy beside me had to keep explaining what was happening, which he was more than happy to do. A game consists of nine innings (or frames). Each team will bat in each inning and their turn ends when three players are out. That means that you don't know how long the game will take. At 11.00pm, after three hours, they had completed six of the nine. Our daughter, who was still partially on UK time, was on her last legs, so we headed off to get the train back.

It was a shame to leave early, but we weren't the only ones, so it must have been a
Red Sox PitchingRed Sox PitchingRed Sox Pitching

Come on Red Sox.
longer than usual game, particularly for all the kids.

The score was eight seven to the Yankees when we left and we found out later that it was still eight seven at the end. Sadly the Red Sox lost, but at least it looks like the rest of the game was not that eventful, well at least as far as the small matter of score is concerned.


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