Let’s Get It On, Boston!

For someone who is from a tropical country and who might be currently experiencing the summer heat, the weather in Boston is quite the opposite. It was about 55°F outside when Lorenz and I decided to take a walk towards the Boston Aquarium where we would meet up with people from Schneider Electric, Andrea Franco and Dan DeLuca. We decided to walk along Washington St. and see what we would find there.

We saw that the theater district is quite near the hotel. Just at the intersection near the hotel, the Boston Opera House is located. I was personally fascinated by the architecture of the buildings in the vicinity. I am amazed at how old the structures must be but still there is beauty in it. There are even some restoration works ongoing.

We strolled further towards School St. where the Boston Irish Famine Memorial is located. Just across the street the Old South Meeting House, which is both a Museum and a Historic site, can be found. We were just passing by when we saw that admission today was for free. Since we still had time, we decided to enter the museum and learn some historical events that occurred there and in Boston in general. In memory of the bombing the occurred last year, the admission to the museum was for free, in the hope that people who would visit the site would use it as a reflective environment to think about the past events that took place in Boston.

After the stop at the museum, we passed by a shop called Cakeology. I was mainly attracted by the cute design of the store and the giant panda stuffed toy displayed inside. But we were also starving and decided to grab something to eat. Lorenz got a Pink Lemonade Cupcake while I got a Magic Bar, which is a bar of chocolates, caramel, desiccated coconut and peanuts.

We scurried towards State St. since it was already raining. The stroll in the park kind of walk just wouldn’t do. It was like in a snap of a finger, the weather changed. The winds were really strong and the rain kept pouring. Thank God I brought an umbrella with me! It was also a good thing that the guy from reception area of the hotel was kind enough to lend Lorenz an umbrella. But both our umbrella’s got beaten by the strong winds. If Lorenz and I were lighter in mass, we would have been carried by the wind with our umbrellas and fly like Mary Poppins.

We hurriedly walked towards the Boston Aquarium and decided to eat at a restaurant located near the Aquarium. The place is called The Legal Seafood. Lorenz ordered for some gumbo while I got crab meat cake. After lunch, we were finally able to meet Andrea and Dan.

Andrea planned to take us on a Duck Tour around Boston. But due to the inclement weather, the tours were cancelled for the day. We decided to head to the Museum of Science and spent the afternoon there. The museum had a couple of exhibits like the Hall of Human Life, the displays about computer science and robotics, the theater of electricity, the optics display and many more.

After going around the museum we headed to the North End for dinner at an Italian restaurant. But prior to heading to the restaurant, we walked along Hanover to see the churches and gardens. We also walked around the block and passed by the Paul Revere house. One thing that can be noted also was how the road near the Paul revere house was still made of cobblestone. After going around the area, Andrea took us to a place called Pagliuca’s where we enjoyed some scrumptious food. Lorenz had his fill of clams and other seafood served in a broth with pasta. Dan had roasted veal with potatoes. Andrea had some pasta (ziti) with chicken. I ordered Lobster Fra Diavolo. It was taxing to eat the lobster since it was covered in red sauce and to add to that, it was so big and was served with pasta.

We shared stories and got to know each other a bit over dinner. We discussed with Andrea and Dan our project and also talked about specific contributions in the process of completing the project. We also shared our experiences in Paris.

Although the weather was not in favor to what was originally planned, it turned out to be a great day. We really appreciated the time Andrea and Dan took to accompany us in going about the city. Today was about being immersed in a beautiful city with rich history, having great company in getting around and sharing a great meal at the end of the day.

Smitten by the beauty of Boston,
Alyssa

P.S. More photos can be found on my Facebook page. (Click here)

Across the Pacific Ocean

For the next couple of blogs, I will be reposting blogs I wrote while on the Go Green in the City Winner’s Trip sponsored by Schneider Electric. There were days when my teammate Lorenz wrote the entries for the official blog site so I will write about those days from my perspective. Here’s the first one from the bunch. Hope you enjoy and please do let me know what you think. 

Lorenz and I were set to fly to Boston but our point of entry was San Francisco. It is interesting how flying all the way to the other side of the pacific shows the interplay of time and space. After being aboard the plane for approximately 11 hours, we finally arrived in San Francisco.  What is interesting though is that after travelling more than 6,000 miles it seemed that we have gone back in time. We left Manila on Tuesday night, April 14 and arrived in San Francisco at around 7 PM, Tuesday, April 14.

We would have loved to check out San Francisco but Boston was already beckoning us from East Coast of the United States. We took another plane ride to Boston (approximately 6 hours). What was cool about the plane ride to Boston was having a female pilot. It was my first time to see and experience riding an aircraft that had a woman as a captain. Coincidentally, it goes along pretty well with the vision of Go Green in the City regarding the participation and role of women in society nowadays.

Once we landed at the Logan International airport and got our luggage, we were picked up by a chauffeur. Schneider Electric prepared all the bookings for us including the car service from the airport to the hotel. It was a short ride from the airport to the hotel. But we managed to get a glimpse of Boston. We can’t wait to explore the city while we are here! Please join us in our adventures as we travel around USA and Denmark through this blog.

All the best,

Alyssa

P.S.

On our way to the hotel, we passed by buildings with flags half-masted. It was the anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing that happened last year. Our prayers go out to all who were victims of the bombing.

 

1. Postcard from Across the Pacific Ocean

1. Postcard from Across the Pacific Ocean

I have joined the bandwagon and accepted the 100 Happy Days Challenge.

Yesterday, there was a bomb threat scare in our university. It really touched me that friends made an effort to message me to confirm if I was alright. Some of the them are not even from Metro Manila or the Philippines for that matter. One of the people who posted on my Facebook timeline is a friend whom I met almost a year ago during the Go Green in the City competition. Today, upon coming back home to my room, I spotted the postcard he sent me from the US. It is mounted on the door of our refrigerator. It made me smile knowing that people, even though separated by distance, still care. Reading his message on the postcard also reminds me that each person has the to create an adventure of his/her own.

If ever you do come across this post, please do share a moment that made you happy today. 🙂 Knowing others are happy inspires me to be happy 🙂

P.S. Another thing that made me happy was to see that Bea, the girl who lives next door, had the courage to shave off her hair as part of Ateneo Kythe’s Cancer Awareness Campaign. 🙂

Ramblings, Scramblings and the thought of Happiness

It is always at the start of the year when the feeling of uncertainty is heightened. At the same time, a sense of hope overwhelms us thinking about the possibilities that could occur. We are all pumped up to make the world a better place. We start listing things that we want to do with our lives and with these lists we create a mold that would perfectly shape a version (insert age here) of ourselves.

I am heeding a friend’s advice for this year. Through that number game on Twitter, a friend told me to “find happiness in being ordinary.” The thought has been lingering in my mind ever since. A lot of us want fame and fortune that we forget how nice it is to be ordinary. We could wallow in a space where we could go unnoticed, out of sight from the scrutiny of other people. But I guess that was not my friend meant. I wanted to ask my friend what he meant exactly. It is possible that I could be over analyzing things. But then again, there is no harm in provoking the mind to think some more. I guess being ordinary is getting rid of that spotlight. It is a matter of freeing one’s self from the selfishness that’s been nesting on the inside. It is acknowledging that the world does not revolve me and being okay with it.

But for me it must not stop in finding happiness in being ordinary. I must also learn to find happiness in things that are ordinary. There are things that go unnoticed if we don’t take a break from all the hustle and bustle. One of the things I learned to appreciate is the bliss of silence. Don’t get me wrong. I like to talk, I like to listen to music. But the silence allows me to think (about life and all its conundrums or about solutions for a bug in the code I am working on.) Another thing I have been doing more often is gazing at the moon and stars. We were on our way to church and I was in the back seat of the car. I stuck my head out the window and saw that the night sky was clear and stars glittered. To my amazement, I just blurted: “Wow!” (If my memory serves my right, my mom and sister were a little bit confused. Hahaha!) To a person whose sky is polluted by light, a clear sky with stars shining is a sight to behold. One thing I miss though is seeing the sunrise. I want to be a morning person but I’m failing miserably in trying to become one.

The talk about ordinary things reminds me  a Bosconian teaching — that we must also do ordinary things extraordinarily well.  In the process of finding happiness this year, I hope that we all go through what life has to offer. No rewinds, no fast forwards. No pause nor stop. We might find happiness in being ordinary in the ordinary. Let’s find happiness in being ordinary and in the ordinary but let’s do ordinary things extraordinarily well.

Cheers to chasing happiness and dreams this year!

The view from my dorm room’s window as I the sun rises. ❤

P.S.

I came across this 30-Day Challenge called Zero to Hero. The first post should be an introduction about me but in line of being hopeful I ended up writing an introduction to a facet of the person who I want to be. Also, if you are interested in keeping a blog the Zero to Hero is a good way to get you started 🙂