Drive By History

My work travels take me to various cities, where I typically try to squeeze in a bit of culture while I'm there. But today's day-trip to Baltimore and Washington, DC, left no time for that. Alas, I snapped one great picture of the National Mall as we drove by in a cab on the wait to the airport. That's the Jefferson Memorial, honoring the 3rd US President and author of the Declaration of Independence, and behind it the Washington Monument, honoring the 1st US President (and, the world's tallest stone structure!).

National Mall


The Lake Region

After our visit to Alessi we drove through the nearby Lakes region, past the beautiful Lake Como (currently famous for being George Clooney's second home, but rich in true history: it's one of Europe's deepest lakes at 1,345 feet; the town of Bellagio on its shores has been an English enclave for 200 years; Pliny the Elder (born AD 23, Roman author, naval and army commander of the early Roman Empire) and Pliny the Younger (lawyer, author, and magistrate of Ancient Rome whose letters are one of our main sources of info on Roman life) both lived here; Alessandro Vota (self taught physicist who invented the battery and for whom "volts" are named) was born here in 1745; and Benito Mussolini and his mistress were executeed here before being taken to Milan where his body was put on display.

But my favorite bit of history is that many of the Romantic poets that I studied in College - Percy Bysshe Shelley, William Wordsworth, and fellow Bowdoin grad Henry Wadsworth Longfellow all wrote here. And I can see why: it's a beautiful landscape to draw from. We drove on to the smaller Lake Orta at had lunch at Ristorante Giardinetto on its shore. There, we sat outside on the terrace with the Italian Alps as a backdrop: Image
Dozens of swallows (rondinello) were busy making mud nests in the rafters above us: Image
And I ate the most delicious lake fish made with butter and sage followed by Liquid Naples Pasteria (a sort of pudding with chunks of yellow cake and citrus bits, cinnamon ice cream, and pastry crumble). Image
Heaven. Image

Seeing Red

Red Leaves

There is some stunning Fall foliage around the city right now, like this beauty in front of Burroughs Wharf in the North End:

Burroughs wharf

Red Sox

About one million fans lined the route for today's Boston Red Sox Parade of Champions. We checked out the scene from Cambridge's North Point Park, where the duck boats carrying the World Series Champs plunged into the Charles River. Here's a shot of the scene (if you look closely, you can see crowds of people all along the water's edge).

North point park

Red Skies

Check out the sunset over the city on Friday night:


Red Sauce

Also on Friday, I reunited with some fellow Bowdoin Polar Bears to remember our friend Linda Geffner '94 who passed away from breast cancer recently. We shared a (surprisingly good!) meal at Cantina Italiana, a North End institution since 1931 and site of Linda's celebratory dinner after she completed the Boston Marathon in 2012. Sadly, her dream to run tomorrow's NYC marathon went unrealized, but I'm sure she's up there running with the angels.

Remembering linda

Remembering linda2