10/06/2016 - 10/07/2016 70 °F
As some of you know, Jeremy and I are not staying in hotels on this trip. We are staying in Airbnbs and one hostel. An Airbnb can be anything from a room in someone's home, to a treehouse, to a whole house all to yourself. They are often cheaper than hotel rooms, but not always, because you might be paying for a unique experience! The idea is to get to live like a local wherever you go. The first place we booked is a room and a private bath in someone's apartment. The neighborhood is nice, but we're certainly learning what it's like to deal with parking and street cleaning and house construction. Yesterday morning, we could have been towed if we had gone to our car 10 minutes later. The street cleaning guy was ready to go, and the tow truck was parked right behind us, ready to hook up when the clock struck 8:00! This morning, we went to our car to look to see if we left camera supplies inside (luckily we needed them and went looking for them), and got yelled at because we had parked in a construction zone in front of a guy's torn up driveway. Oops. Good thing he waited long enough for us to come out and move it before having it towed! Needless to say, I can stand to live without street parking drama.
This is the house we are staying in. I believe there are 4 apartments in the building. Our room is the double windows all the way at the top.
If you think Airbnb might be a good fit for your next overnight stay, road trip, or adventure, book through our link...both you and us will get $30 towards our stays! Here is the link: http://www.airbnb.com/c/ashleyw787. We also noticed that there are gift cards for Airbnb out there. That would make a perfect gift for these two crazy travellers...hint, hint! ; )
Anyway, back to our adventures after that little plug there! Yesterday, we got up and drove about an hour south of Boston to a cranberry farm. Being a berry farm kid, I was curious about cranberries. They are only grown on the East coast and Wisconsin. Since I was interested, Jeremy and all of you will also get to learn about how they are grown and harvested! Here is the name of the place we went, in case you ever find yourself near Cape Cod...
The tour started out by the farmer himself giving us a little background about cranberries. They were here when the settlers came. The Indians had used them for food and dyes. He showed us pictures of how the farm hands would have harvested them by hand long ago. Now, of course, they have machines, but the dry picking machine looks very similar to the hand picking device (which I did not get a picture of). Here is what a field of cranberries look like. They are raised in a field with sloped edges so that they can flood the fields and the water won't get out.
Now here is the machine they now use to dry pick the berries:
The farmer was working on picking some, so the machine was sitting in the field for us to see:
They also "wet pick" them, if they want to get a field harvested quickly. Here is the machine that does that, followed by a picture I took of a picture of them running the machine:
If the berries are dry picked, it keeps them looking good and they can be sold at the market and to bakeries. If the berries are picked wet, they are sent off to be made into juice, Craisins, and jelly. This is because they can get bruised during the process of flooding, and once they are wet, they will never be dried out again, so they can't be sold as dry berries. They can be stored in a cool, dry place from October until about March of the following year. That is a pretty good shelf life! The farmer's wife took us to a flooded bog to put on waders and walk around in it. Here are some pictures I took:
She also took some pictures of us:
Yup, we know you're jealous of how cool we are!
After the cranberry bog tour, we got back in the car and headed to the middle of Massachusetts, to the town of Rutland, to be exact. If you have passed through Marietta since 2012, you have likely seen signs saying that Rutland, MA is the sister city of Marietta, OH. Before our trip, I had to find out what that sistership meant. I learned that Rutland is the town where Rufus Putnam lived prior to coming to Marietta to settle the land with the Ohio company. I wanted to see the town for myself, and figured while we were close by, we should go! By "close" by, I mean two hours, but whatever. Here is the Town of Rutland's proclamation to make Marietta their sister city: http://www.townofrutland.org/Pages/RutlandMA_News/Proclamation%20of%20Sister%20City:%20%20Marietta.
Here's what we found when we got to town:
The white building is their community center, where town meeting are held (I'm picturing Gilmore Girls style!). The Dunkin Donuts is in one of the most majestic buildings we've seen up here for a Dunkin Donuts, so I had to get a picture!
While in town, I started wondering if they had preserved the house where Putnam lived. We walked to the Historical Society, but they were closed that day. So, we resorted to Google, and learned that a couple had purchased the property and was running a Bed and Breakfast out of it. How cool is that!? We headed to the address, and creeped around a little for some pictures. Sadly, the place was locked and it didn't seem as though anyone was around, so we didn't get to see inside. You'll be impressed at this place, if you compare it to what he built when he got to Marietta (found here: http://www.campusmartiusmuseum.org/exhibits.html.
Another article with lots of info about the connection: http://landmark.our-hometown.com/news/2012-07-12/Rutland_News/RUTLAND_Rufus_Putnam_connects_towns_with_shared_hi.html.
I thought all of that was pretty cool!
Afterwards, we headed to a couple of breweries north of Boston. I was having fun taking pictures of Jeremy in his element:
This morning, we headed out to take a tour of Harvard...mostly because our Duck tour tickets gave us a free tour, so why not!? I took a few pictures of buildings on campus, but will share the best ones with you, and the ones I actually remember what they were.
This is a dorm building, and the significant person who lived here was Bill Gates, before he dropped out.
This is of a real live strike that was happening today. The food service workers are on strike (the first strike in Harvard history, I think the tour guide said), because they want paid with health benefits all year round rather than just for the seven months school is in session. They were walking around making all kinds of racket (literally, they were banging on drums while walking through the streets of campus!). I thought it was interesting!
Aaaaand this is the building where Mark Zuckerburg lived while he developed The Facebook...
The Harvard tour was good overall, and it was given by a current student, so we got a lot of information from a student's perspective. We went to lunch at a small place called Mr. Bartley's burgers near campus. For the second time on our trip, we were sat at a table with strangers while we dined. Must be a thing up here.
After that, we took a long walk to a couple more beer stops, and we made the beer be photogenic again.
We walked back into the city, which required a walk over the Charles River, where we had boated around in the Duck a couple of days ago. This evening, there were a bunch of sail boats hanging out on the river, and it was beautiful! Enjoy!
A friend had recommended that we walk through Beacon Hill, as that is where the rich folks live, so naturally, there's going to be some cool houses to gander upon. Here are a couple of pictures we took in that neck of the woods.
And last but not least, a cool sunset shot of a pretty awesome looking bridge that connects Boston and Cambridge. We crossed it twice last night, and I believe it has 6 lanes of traffic going both ways (total of 12 lanes).
That is all for tonight! We hope you enjoyed all the history!