Beantown, Sam Adams, Merica

When traveling to a new city, it is hard to know what to expect. You create an image in your head of what the city looks like, what the food tastes like, how the place feels. However, when you get there that image can be completely wrong. This is not one of those times.

This weekend I visited Boston, Massachusetts, home to the Sox, Harvard and Tom Brady. While I may dislike (hate) Tom Brady, Harvard would probably (definitely) reject me, and the Sox have caused me some (lots) of heartache over the years, I have to say Boston is an amazing city. It is clean, vibrant and, besides the awful traffic, a city with lots to offer.

Of course in a new city I need to check out the breweries. We visited two, Harpoon Brewery and Boston Brewery also known as Samuel Adams. Both gave great tours. Harpoons tour included a 30 minute tasting with as many as you wanted. For  five bucks that cannot be beat. Plus, in their beer hall you have to try their pretzels. That is a game changer and my girlfriend, Olivia, agrees with me. Best pretzel we have had. Samuel Adams’ tour was extremely informative with a mini beer tasting class and three different beers all  for free with a small donation to a few charities being encouraged. Well worth it for the beer and tour. Then after we headed to Doyle’s nearby where they give you a free glass of Sam Adams’ specific glass designed for the perfect drink to take with a beer purchase.

In addition, to the breweries Boston is filled with great food, (the Mac and Cheese at Stephanie’s on Newbury is one of the best I’ve tried),  historic landmarks and beautiful parks (Good Will Hunting). Additionally, the old taverns such  as Bell in Hand and Warren Tavern take you back to the 1700s when men like Paul Revere frequented these places. Talk about drinking a beer for freedom. A city like this right on the water is a beautiful place, I just wish it had been a little warmer.

I think one of the most interesting things about the city is Uber Pool. Now I know other places have this, but it is not here in Cleveland yet and the concept is very interesting. Uber in itself is an app about trusting a stranger to give you a ride. In an age where we are more and more connected electronically but less and less connected personally, Uber Pool allows you to not only get a ride from a stranger but share a ride with one. Some of these rides are silent, but others such as the girl going in town for a grad school interview or the local with suggestions on things to do can create a connection sometimes lost among strangers. When we part we go on our way to never see each other again but for a few minutes you can  trust a stranger. Boston was great for that. It is a city that lived up to those expectations I had created in my head. When I first arrived, I tweeted that the city was in my top five I have visited after just a few hours and a follower of mine responded back that it would soon be in my top three. They were right.

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