I  DIDN’T  GET A PARTRIDGE  IN A PEAR TREE FOR CHRISTMAS  

December  25 is officially  over ,  but I’m  still thinking  about Christmas  songs . 

You might recognize the song that goes, “on the first day of Christmas ,  my true love gave to me- a partridge  in  a pear tree.”

I don’t  remember  too much of the sing, but I’m  going to  change the words.

A lot.

My true love didn’t  give me  anything  nice on the first day of Christmas . 

Instead, for the first  day of Christmas ,  this was my present  from the city of Boston ; 

A white Christmas ,  chills, a sore throat ,  coughing ,  sneezing ,  and wheezing . 

While many people  were ripping the covers off their presents, I was putting  covers over my body.

I was shivering!

The rest of my “12” days of Christmas  weren’t  any different . 

No, let me stop lying.

It went downhill from the first day of Christmas . 

My second day of Christmas ,  I was on a Peter Pan Bus along with a few other  people  who  were in the same  shape that I was.

Most of us were wrapped  up  warmly, coughing ,  sneezing and freezing  all the way from South Station  Bus Terminal  in Boston  to Port Authority  in “The Big  Apple  “.

(More on the Peter Pan bus ride to and from Boston  in a later post.)

On my third day of Christmas ,  I didn’t  have ladies dancing, there were no pipers piping, or lords a leaping.

I had doctors and nurses taking my temperature ,  my vital signs and doing xrays to make sure that I didn’t  have pneumonia . 

My “last” day of Christmas, day number four, was spent like days one thru three.

I’m  under the covers except now I’m  taking medicine and drinking lots of fluids.

There will be no five thru 12 days of Christmas  because  I just know it’s  going to be like days one thru four, just saying.

I once wrote a post about my favorite holiday . 

Christmas  wasn’t  it, and now I know why.

I didn’t  get a partridge  in a pear tree for the  first day of Christmas  or any of the other days of Christmas . 

Instead ,  I  got a box of  tissues, chicken soup, orange juice, a blue surgical mask, and a bottle of  cough syrup.

Merry Christmas  to me!

HOME, WHAT DOES IT  MEAN  TO  YOU ? 

I  was reading  a blog post from November 30th  written by blogger Sam from Living and he was talking about  the  places where  he had lived and how his current place of residence  felt like  “home” to him.

It made me  think.

Just what is the definition  of  “home”?

No, not the definition  that’s  found in the dictionary.

What does that  word “home” actually  mean  to  you?

Is it  the place where you live now?

Or is it the place where you were born?

Like Sam, I  also have lived in  four places.

New York  City ,  Boston ,  Los  Angeles ,  and Las Vegas . 

I also lived in  Dayton , Ohio ,  but as I  only went there for a year of college, I  really  consider  it as a”layover”.

Looking  back on it now, and nothing  against  the  city of Dayton ,  but outside of a University  of  Dayton  Flyers  basketball  game where it seemed as though  the whole town showed up, there really  wasn’t  anything  to do . 

Even though  I  was born in “The City  That Never Sleeps  “, I really  don’t  consider  it home.

Don’t  get me wrong ,  there are more than  enough  things to do here and even  though  some of my family  members  are still here, nope, it’s  not “home”.

New York  City  is  just the  place that happens  to  be  on my birth certificate  and the place that I  live now.

I liked the  10 years that I  spent in Los Angeles  and the three years that I  lived in Las  Vegas ,  but these places  weren’t  home for me either.

I’m  an East Coast girl at heart and I was “homesick” when I lived on the West Coast . 

Now, when I say I was “homesick”, I  don’t  mean  for my family  and  friends . 

I meant that I  missed  the quicker pace of life that I experienced  and that I was used to back east.

I even missed the rudeness and the no nonsense, take no prisoners  attitude of the two cities  back east that I lived in, New York  City  and Boston . 

Home to me just isn’t  the  city that I happen to  live in, it’s  the city that I can be myself  and be comfortable  as well as safe, knowing  that when I go back to the place where I live, my “home” will always be there.

That’s  why  Boston  will always  be  home to me.

When New York  City  gets to be too much  and I need that personal  space to go to, I  have  one.

It’s  called Boston . 

Yes, I can definitely  do  a 30  Plus  Teams  Tour  there as well . 

Home means different  things to  everyone . 

What does home mean to you ? 

Drop me a line  in  the  comments  section  or  shoot  me an email  at sportsdiva63@gmail.com  and let me know.

Once again ,  thank you for liking  and  supporting  30 Plus  Teams  30  Plus  Dreams . 

HOW I LEARNED  TO  LOVE PHILADELPHIA  

Some of  the  cities  on the  east coast  of the  United  States  seem to  have  some  kind of  rivalry  with  each other . 

It doesn’t  matter  whether it’s  in music ,  museums ,  history ,  politics, and especially  sports ,  there’s  sure to  be  some kind of  rivalry.

Boston  and Philadelphia  seem to  have  a rivalry that’s  gone on since Colonial  days.

People  in Boston  love to  remind everyone  that  Ben Franklin  was actually  from Boston . 

People  in Philly LOVE to remind Bostonians that Ben Franklin  LEFT Boston and MOVED to  Philadelphia . 

Bostonians and Philadelphians agree on one thing.

They HATE New York  and this has gone on  since Revolutionary  War times.

Growing up in New York  City ,  Boston was always an afterthought . 

As for Phily, that was another story.

They were either “that city below New Jersey  ” or the city with all those losing sports teams.

You never confused someone  from New York  with somebody from Philadelphia  and vice versa . 

If you did, you must have wanted to be put in the hospital very badly.

It might be that both cities have citizens that you really didn’t  want  to  mess with.

Although, I’d  say  that  people  in Philadelphia  aren’t  as rude as they are in New York  City . 

My first visit to  “the City of  Brotherly  Love  “came about  six  or seven  years  ago . 

I went with  a friend  and her cousin . 

To say that I  had a terrible  time and never wanted  to  come back would  be  an understatement . 

I didn’t . 

We did all the tourist  things, the Liberty Bell ,  see Independence  Hall ,  but not go into it, visiting Reading  Terminal  Market  and walking around  the  city ,  but not really getting  to explore it .

Looking back on the visit ,  it was easy  to  see why I  had such a lousy time.

The trip was a bust, let alone a wasted time.

We were supposed  to  stay for the weekend ,  but we didn’t . 

We came back to  New York  City  the next night, with my friend and her cousin  complaining  about EVERYTHING  that seemed to  be  wrong with the  city, from the hotel to the location . 

Not for  nothing ,  but this is one of the reasons I travel  by myself  a lot.

It wasn’t  the city, it was the people who I traveled  with . 

When it came time for another trip, this time I followed my own advice and decided to  give Philadelphia  another try.

This time three people  were going- me, myself  and  I . 

I not only saw the Liberty Bell  and went inside of  Independence  Hall, which you can do, but I visited Chinatown ,  City Hall with the statue of founder  William Penn on top of it, the African  American  Museum  of  Philadelphia ,  Constitution  Hall and The Bourse, which is  a smaller version of  Reading  Terminal  Market.
I also  saw the University  City section  of  the  city  and visited three of the colleges in town, Temple  University ,  University  of  Pennsylvania ,  and Drexel  University . 

I  even had a real Philadelphia  Cheesesteaks ,  not from the places where the tourists  go, Pat’s  and Geno’s, but the place where the  locals  go go their Cheesesteaks ,  Campos . 

Because  this was my first 30 Plus  Teams  Tour ,  I went to  Citizens  Bank Park to see a Philadelphia  Phillies  baseball  game and to the Wells  Fargo  Center to see a Philadelphia  Flyers hockey game.

I was getting  to like the  city a lot.

If you can take the  subway  in  New  York  City ,  you can take it anywhere.

I did.

I got to  be  such an expert  on SEPTA, (the Southeast Philadelphia  Transit  Authority  ), and the local  subway  that I  even know which train would take  me to  Philadelphia  International  Airport  and what train stop I  have to get off to go to  games. (It’s  the Stadium  Stop, in case you ever go to Philadelphia  for a baseball ,  basketball ,  football  or hockey game.)

Speaking  of  Philadelphia  Airport ,  many times it’s  cheaper  to  leave from this airport  than JFK, and it’s  not as hectic . 

This summer, I made another  trip to  the  city for the NFL  Draft . 

There were STILL more places that I  hadn’t  seen  and restaurants  that I  hadn’t  eaten  in.

I  wanted to  see, eat, and do as much as I could.

I even stayed two days longer than I was supposed  to . 

Who would have  known  that this city would turn out to  be  one of  my favorite  places to  visit . 

I can’t  wait to  go back to  Philadelphia  and discover  even more  new things.

HAVE YOU EVER  FELT UNCOMFORTABLE TRAVELLING ALONE?

I started travelling by myself  when I was in high school . 

It was a weekend  trip to  Boston  and I can honestly  say that  I  really  didn’t  know  what  to  expect ,  nor did I  do  any research  on where I was going.

This is something  that  you should  NEVER do whether you’re  going  on a trip around  the  world  or doing a 30  Plus  Teams  Tour  of  somewhere . 

Do your  research  before  you  go  anywhere ,  that way you have some idea of what’s  expected  of you.

I have since traveled by myself  to London, Singapore ,  Kuala  Lumpur  and Penang ,  Malaysia  as well as Brisbane  and Sydney ,  Australia . 

I won’t  even mention all the times and places in the United  States  and Canada that I’ve  traveled  to  by myself . 

Did I feel  uncomfortable  going by myself  to these places, in some cases ,  not knowing  anybody ? 

I’m  not  lying  to you when I say no.

Actually ,  I didn’t  and I still don’t  even  after all these years of traveling  by myself . 

Don’t  get me wrong.

Lots of thoughts  went through  my mind, but nothing like will any physical  harm come to  me in these places . 

I was more concerned  about will I have a problem  because  I’m  carrying  an American  passport?

This was way before the current  political  climate ,  by the way.

I worried  about when I went overseas ,  will these places have people that speak English ? 

How do some of the places that I’m  going to  feel about a woman  traveling  by herself ? 

Most of all  I worried about will I have a problem with  the  fact that I’m an older woman  of color travelling  by herself . 

Luckily, I didn’t  have a problem  and people  were very nice.

Although ,  in Singapore  and  Malaysia  some well meaning ladies that I met in the shops and on my plane ride wanted  to  know  “where was my husband  and  how could he let me travel by myself ? ”

Most of my travel now is in the United  States  and Canada . 

Because  I  was  raised to be very independent  by my folks, may they rest in peace, I don’t feel uncomfortable  at all traveling  by myself.

I like to  think  that  the  Good Lord  is watching  over me no matter where I go , so everything  is  going  to  be okay . 

Of course, even here in my own country, I research  and  am very aware of my surroundings . 

If something doesn’t  feel or seem right, I avoid it like the plague . 

I don’t  wait for anyone  to  go  with me, I have to  go somewhere  because ,  you know, staying  home  is NOT  an  option . 

Although when I do one of my famous  30 Plus  Teams  Tours, and I’m  asked by some well meaning person  why am I going  to this city ,  who do I know there ,  I’d be a multimillionaire  for all the side glances I get when I tell them that  I’m going for a baseball ,  basketball  or a hockey game.

What about  you ?  

Do you ever feel uncomfortable  when you travel  by yourself ? 

If so, how do you handle it?

Drop me a line in the comments  section ,  let me know and as always, thank you for liking  and  following  my  blog posts . 

REVOLUTIONARY TALES – BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – HOSTEL INTERNATIONAL BOSTON

15741138_10209581065256860_7178278709027647454_n15727382_10209581065136857_3668787696533672403_n12119988_10206273333125624_449651143605530036_o15698083_10209581062496791_9171902710831967330_n15726879_10209566076882160_5612079994920289691_n12279047_10206421694834574_8873849533717087032_n15727134_10209581077737172_9050535905828733217_n15697659_10209581072217034_1162954352304140085_n12052363_10206267685224430_2196504495219363579_o15697259_10209581080457240_7972839033145568731_n15740831_10209581055976628_5881142736025342517_n1396906_10201430120448334_337747470_oIt’s  located  in the  heart  of  Boston ,  halfway  between Chinatown  and the  Theater District  of  the  city .

It’s  part  of  the  Hostelling   International  group ,  which  has hostels  all over  the  world .

This  hostel is  very  easy  to  get  to  by public  transportation .

If you’re  coming  from  Boston  Logan  Airport ,  you can take the  free Silver Line train to South  Station  and  walk a few blocks  down  to  the hostel  at 19 Stuart Street .

If you’re  arriving  by an Amtrak  train, Greyhound  or Megabus, you’ll  arrive  at South  Station  as well.

You have  two other options  besides walking  when you get to  South  Station .

You can either take the Silver Line bus, which isn’t  free, and drops you off across  the  street  from  the  hostel ,  or if  it’s  late at night ,  and you really  don’t  know  your way around  the  city, take one of  the  many cabs that wait  outside  the  terminal .

Have the  address  of the  hostel  handy just  in case  the  cab driver  claims  he doesn’t  know  how  to  get  there  and tries  to  overcharge  you .

I’m  very biased ,  but I  like  to think that  this  is  one of  the  nicest  hostels  in  the  country ,  and given  all  the  reviews  that this  hostel  receives  from many of  the  hostel  AND hotel booking  sites ,  I’m  not  the  only  one  who  feels  this  way .

The building  that  the  hostel  is located  in  was  once  an office  building .

It has  six floors  and  like  most  of  the  hostels  in  the  world ,  Hostel  International  Boston  has private  rooms ,  and dormitory  rooms  with four, six, and  eight  bunk beds .

You  have  male ,  female ,  and  coed rooms .

Each  room  has lockers, so remember  to  bring  your own  padlock .

If you don’t  have  one, you can buy one at the  front  desk .

Each bed also has a private lamp so you won’t  disturb your bunkmates.

There’s  no  curfew per say, but if you come  back late from partying  in the clubs on Lansdowne  Street  or those hockey ,  baseball ,  or basketball  games   at TD Gardens  or Fenway  Park ,  just remember  to  keep  the  noise  down  to  a  minimum .

When  you  first  check  into  the  hostel ,  you’ll  be  asked  if you  have  a Hosteling International  membership  card ,  and they also  want to  make  sure  that  you  don’t  live  less than  90  miles  away .

If do  live less than the 90 miles ,  you can’t  stay  at the hostel .

If you  don’t  have  a membership  card ,  they add three dollars  per night  to your bill.

That might  not  seem  like  much ,  but I  would  advise  getting  one.

The card doesn’t  only  work  for  this  hostel ,  but for  Hostel  International  branches  all over the  world .

Membership  is good  for  one year .

Check  in time  is  2pm or earlier ,  if beds are available .

If not, you can store your bags at the  hostel  and  explore  the  city  until  a bed is ready.

Check  out  time  is  11am .

There’s  a small  cafe  area  right  next  to  the  big  and spacious  lobby  area .

They  also  have  a  jar  of  cookies  right  at the  front  desk .

There’s  also free WiFi  in the hostel ,  they’ll  give  you  the  password  at the  front  desk  .

The elevator  is right  in front  of  you  as you  use your  key card  for  entrance  from the  lobby  into  the  hallway .

If your room  is  on the  second  floor ,  you can get your exercise  and walk up the  stairs ,  unless  your bags  are heavy.

All the  hallways  from  the  third  floor  all the  way  up to  the  six floor  might  look familiar  to some  of  you  if you’ve  been  to Boston  before .

The hallways  are  painted  in blue ,  orange ,  red, and  green .

That’s  right ,  those  are  the  colors  of  the  four  “T”  lines that  make  up  the Boston  subway .

If you  want  to   go sightseeing   in the  city  and aren’t  sure which  stops  are on what  train  line, you don’t  need  a  guide .

Just  look  at  the  shower curtains  in all of   the  bathrooms .

It’s  the map of all the  subway  stations  in the  city, including  the  commuter lines that run from South Station  and  North  Station ,  called  the Purple  line.

But please don’t  depend on the shower  curtain .

Get yourself  a  Boston  city  guide from  the  front  desk  if you didn’t  bring  one  with  you .

Like many hostels ,  they also have  free breakfast .

It runs from  7am until  10am, every day.

Coffee, tea, and water are free all day but for the daily  breakfast ,  there’s  white or wheat bread, bagels, fruit, hard boiled eggs ,  cereal, yogurt ,  as well as orange juice  and  apple juice .

The kitchen ,  which is  on the second  floor ,  has cooking  facilities ,  dishes, pots and  pans ,  cooking  utensils ,  condiments  and a place  to  store  your  food .

Just  remember to  label  your food  if you put it in the refrigerator  or pantry.

They provide  labels  for you.

If you don’t  label  your food ,  someone  might  take  it or worse, the staff will throw  it  away .

The second floor  also has a laundry room ,  reading  room ,  game room, and my favorites ,  the candy vending  machines  and  the  TV  room .

There’s  also computers so that you  can print  out  your boarding  pass  or  make  another  reservation  for  one of  the  other  Hostelling  International  locations .

The hostel  is   in  such a central  location ,  so you  can  walk  to  Chinatown  for  either  Chinese ,  Vietnamese , Malaysian ,  Japanese  or Thai  food .

There’s  even  fast  food  restaurants  close  enough  as bars and  pubs stay open fairly  late due  to  the  fact  that  this  is  the  Theater  District .

If you  don’t  want  to  have  take  out  food, Walgreens ,  CVS  and good  old  7-Eleven  are a block  or so  away  from  the  hostel for those groceries  that you might need.

Unlike  the Old  City  Hostel  in Philadelphia  that I  mentioned  in  an earlier  post , (  See  sportsandtravelblog.wordpress.com /  2017 / 05/ 05 Liberty  -Tales – Philadelphia  –  Pennsylvania  –  The  -House  -At-325-Cherry-Street), this hostel  is a  “dry” hostel .

Don’t  look  for  any alcohol ,  because  it’s  not  allowed  on the  premises  anywhere .

The rooms  have  bathrooms  right  outside  the room ,  so remember  to  bring  your  key  card  with you  .

The  most  nights  that  one  can  stay  in the  hostel  is 14 days  in a calendar  year.

Other hostels  have this  rule  as well .

The  hotels  in town  are fairly  expensive ,  but  this  hostel  is a very  affordable  option  for  you .

I  would  advise  though  booking  directly  on the  hostel’s own website  rather  than  on websites  such as Hostel  World or Booking . com.

One  more thing  about  the  kitchen .

There’s  communal  tables which  makes  it  easy  to  strike  up a  conversation  with  your fellow  travelers  .

If you  don’t  make new friends  or strike  up a conversation  with  at least  ONE  person  during  your time here, given  all the  activities  provided by  the  hostel ,  sorry, that’s  on you, boo.

Some of  those  travelers  might be  going  to  that  same  Red Sox  baseball  game  or Celtics  basketball  game  that  you’re  going  to .

I could  stay  anywhere  in the city  as I have  friends  and  family  here.

But is is my go to  place  when I’m  in town.

Make  the  Hostel  International  Boston  your place if you  come  here for a 30  Plus  Teams  Tour  or not.

REVOLUTIONARY TALES – BOSTON ,MASSACHUSETTS. THE CITY I LOVE IN PICTURES .

12188236_10206274260348804_6885594308783938867_o581494_3364641708229_996407088_n318252_3434344490755_456305017_n14721750_10208993181440132_1980846465528261039_n14716246_10208993181680138_5729311398324422308_n12184998_10206274285629436_5529906656422416812_o12183759_10206274237948244_6325937574897012843_o14732243_10208993127838792_6585934674574521085_nI   wasn’t  born there, I  only  lived there for 13 years, going on a whim  and not knowing  a soul.

Boston ,  Massachusetts  will always  be  my home and my getaway  from  all the  craziness  that  is New York  City .

I love the monuments ,  memorials ,  the cobblestone  streets ,  and riding  the Swan  Boat’s  and yes, even going  to  Fenway  Park ,  because  this  is  a  30  Plus  Teams  Tour .

I can’t  say enough  about  my home , so  I’ll  just  let my pictures  do the  talking  for me.

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SOME THINGS THAT I LOVE

I’m sure  that  I’m  going  to  leave  out  something  , but these are  some  of  the  things  that  I  really  love.

 

Lipstick

Handbags  – No, they don’t  have  to  be  name brands .  I  LOVE HANDBAGS !

Jewelry  – Especially  rings, bracelets  and  necklaces .

Nail Polish

Shoes

Boston

Travel  Guides  –   No matter  where  it is

Dancing  – I’m  not really  great  at it ,  but who cares ?

New York  style  Cheesecake

Ginger Ale

New  Years  Eve  and New  Years  Day

Snowy  Days

Coffee  – No ,  definitely  not Starbucks .  Try 7-Eleven ,  Dunkin  Donuts  or even  Tim  Hortons

Lotion

Comfy   heavy  sweaters

Scented  Soap

Scented  Candles

Kuala  Lumpur ,  Malaysia

My stuffed  animals  – who you just know  are named for athletes ,  except  one. Her name  is  Posh  Spice

Fashion  magazines

Going on  a bus ride  no matter  what  city  I’m  in

A Primanti  Brothers  sandwich  while  I’m  in  Pittsburgh  –  RIGHTEOUS ! !

Going  to  or watching  a sporting  event

Going  for  a  walk  in  the  city ,  no matter  what  city  it is

New England  Clam Chowder

Tacos

Ice Cream

Watching  Travel  Shows  on t.v.

Watching  cooking  shows  on t.v.

Thai Food

Jamaican  Food

Vietnamese  Food, especially  Pho  Soup

Malaysian  Food

Jack Daniels  and  Fireball  Whiskey  – Yeah, I  like  my adult  beverages

Watching  the  ESPN  TV  series ,  “30  For  30  ”

Opening  ceremony  of the  Summer  and  Winter  Olympics , especially  when the countries  make their  entrance  into  the  stadium

Sleeping

Toronto

Going  to  a new place and getting  souvenirs ,  whether  it  be  postcards ,  shot glasses ,  tshirts, magnets ,  key chains  or a bag  with the  city’s  name  on it .

Flying  in  an airplane

Seeing  different  airports  Barbecue  Potato  Chips

My family and My Circle  of  Sisters  FB_IMG_1501501270624FB_IMG_1501501296835FB_IMG_1501501410548FB_IMG_1501243884865FB_IMG_1501502313003FB_IMG_1501501509961FB_IMG_1501501213628FB_IMG_1501502557944FB_IMG_1501502583576FB_IMG_1501502500062FB_IMG_1501502493086

Watching  some reality  shows  – my two guilty  pleasures  are Love and Hip Hop  -Atlanta  and Basketball  Wives

Listening  to  a  song  by either   Hall and  Oates ,  Kenny  G ,  Sade ,  Drake ,  Justin  Timberlake ,  Maroon  5 ,  Chicago  or Flo-Rida .

Museums

Blogging   (naturally  )

Thanking  God  for being  able  to  go on  a 30  Plus  Teams  Tour

 

I gave  you  my  things that I  love. What  about you?

What’s some  of  the  things  that  you love?

Let me  know  in the  comments  section .