Wanderlust has subsided since marriage, there’s less motivation to stray far from the comforts of home. Though it was hard to pass up a business class seat on Amtrak’s Northeast regional overnighter from Washington DC to Boston. The line is one of the few left that employs an old Metroliner car. Half of the Metroliner car is a cafe, and a thin curtain separates the cafe from the business class seats. The seats are laid out in a 2-1 configuration, and I happily slid into a the window seat of a two, and strategically laid out a pack of tissues and a container of extra garlicky hummus in the hopes of deterring a seatmate. Results were mixed, as the closer we got to Boston, the more regular commuters we picked up. However, despite the lack of pillow, despite the always on reading lights and despite being two inches too tall to comfortably curl on the reclining seat, I was able to sleep soundly for a few hours lulled by the rocking and the rumbling.
We pulled into Boston’s South Station at 8a the next morning. After freshening up, I was breakfast bound. It was an easy 15 minute walk to Quincy Market, a perennial favorite. But at this time of day, the Market is devoid of tourists and lacking of locals. There are no street performers, no open shops. An old man sits by the open window reading his newspaper, and prep sounds abound as vendors set up for lunch. The smell of coffee lures me in to one vendor, and the lone cook on duty fires up the grill just for me. He slips extra cheese in my eggs and I slip an extra dollar in his jar.
I grab my own seat by the window, joining the old man who nods a welcome, and a beautiful day in Boston begins.