Friday, June 15, 2007

A Tarheel in Boston

When my sister, Denise, called to say she was headed to New England, I said, "You HAVE to go to the Union Oyster House (below, left)." Growing up in the mountains of Virginia and Carolina as we did, we were still close enough to the ocean to get fresh seafood and thus we developed a passionate love for oysters.

Well, she tried. Heading back into Boston from Gloucester, she got the bright idea to DRIVE into Boston. I told her to take her rental car back, check her bags at the airport, and take the Metro downtown, but no, she had to DRIVE.

Tom and I have driven all over this country and there are some hairy intersections, some crazy drivers, many places with NO signs. Nothing is more difficult to navigate than Boston (above, courtesy McAlpine Images). Let it be said, my sister is a very good driver, with a far better than average sense of direction. Never has she been more frustrated than navigating Beantown.

At one point, she looked at her traveling companion and said, "Diane, is this Harvard?"

"Well, Nisey," she replied as she looked around, "I guess it is."

Winding through Cambridge ( "Our fair city" ), Denise remained totally lost and stopped to ask for directions. Problem is, Yankees talk fast. Denise couldn't understand a word he was saying. Even more frustrated, she left. Moments later, the blue light and siren.

"You missed the stop sign," said the polite and not-overly-friendly policeman.

"Stop sign? I didn't see a stop sign."

"That's no excuse."

Denise was nearly in tears, but the man came back with a warning. He could only give her directions to a point and told her to then stop and ask someone else.

She took the car back and never got to the Union Oyster House. Alas, I feel another road trip coming up, and feel it is necessary for me to meet her in Boston and guide her myself.

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