Monday, February 01, 2010

Happiness: Pushed Out of Hibernation

It was one of those great weekends where I did all sorts of things I wouldn't normally do. We had friends visiting from out of town (I'll call them MUSEUM GUY and THEATER GIRL). Normally, I'm the world's worst tour guide. Wherever I go, I'm much more about people and conversations than historic sites. It's just the way I'm wired. If you visit my hometown in Maine, I can give you directions to the beach and a couple of great restaurants, but I have no clue what the current population is, or if a certain historic-looking building is of actual historic interest (unless it's in the Historic District, and then I can say for certain that it can't ever be painted purple or magenta). It's even worse here in Cambridge/Boston: I drive visitors around while attempting to appear knowledgeable, but my tour basically consists of: "Um...look! There's the Charles River, Harvard, AND MIT! And Fenway Park is over there on the other side of the river under the giant Citgo sign!" It's dismal.

But MUSEUM GUY and THEATER GIRL had specific requests: they wanted clam chowder, and a tour of the Sam Adams Brewery. That I could work with. The brewery was great...totally worth the the sub-zero temps we braved and the long wait to get in. As was the restaurant that served us clam chowder and perhaps the finest shrimp/crab/artichoke heart dip of my lifetime so far.

Here's what I learned (besides that I need to advise all visitors that I need specific requests to be of any use at all...) Both of these experiences are things I wouldn't get around to without a little push. It is good for me to be pushed. I'm a nester by instinct. I like to curl up in flannel PJ's on the couch. Hibernation is my natural winter state. But one's world gets mighty small with too much of that. And I want my world to be big.

How about you? If I visited your town or city, would you love to show me around, or hand me a map to the most obvious landmark and wish me luck?

And on an unrelated but important note, THANK YOU for your awesome encouragement about A MAZE OF GRACE! I'm grateful to have blog friends to celebrate with :)


Stacy said...

I'm not a good tour guide either. There are the things I think are fun, and there are the things everyone else thinks are fun. Not everyone wants to spend an entire day in the bookstore. :)

Sarakastic said...

I'm a very aggressive tour guide. I usually take people around because I love my town so much. Then I insist that they show appropriate awe, if they don't I usually say "Ok, now look at it again. Did you not see that?"

"Museum Guy" said...

Best quote of the day at the Sam Adams Brewery:
"Does dry hopping chafe the beer?"

LEstes65 said...

How did I miss this one? If you ever get your flanneled butt of that couch and get DOWN here, I will show you the Capitol building that is taller than the one in DC. I will feed you TexMex and BBQ until you're bursting out of your elastic waist band. I'll show you the actual ROCK that my town is named for that was a marker on the Chisolm Trail. I'll take you to the court house where the first successful prosecution of the KKK happened (and in TEXAS - who knew?). I'll take you to the Coop of one of the largest single college campuses in the US. We can walk to a high-end outlet mall and a large Swedish furnishing store. I'll take you to the Texas State History museum that's right next to my work. And it's much more interesting than you'd think. I'll drive you to the Alamo which doesn't have a basement and is smack dab in the middle of a city. I'll take you shopping on The River Walk. I'll take you to 6th St and finally get you that tattoo of me that you've been wanting.