the first city

I guess I'm in a trivial pursuit question. It's really weird.” Kevin Youkilis

This fall, I had an experience that every true shopper should be blessed with: when I visited Brandon in Italy, I got to see the world's first shopping mall.

As I was walking around the building, looking at the hand painted ceiling and perfectly carved architecture, I felt overwhelmed. Essentially, during my entire stay in Italy, I had the same feeling.

To think that these buildings have existed for hundreds of years...

To think that before so much of the technology we use today ever existed, before so many current countries had developed, and so many ideas we hold as commonplace today were far from being discovered...

...these buildings were standing.

I can hardly wrap my mind around it.

In a way, it's similar to how I feel when I think about outer space. I know that it goes on forever. However, when I truly think about kind of hurts my brain.

The historic places in Italy give me the same mind-boggling feeling.

Although it may not be quite as old, the first American city also has an impressive amount of history. This weekend I had the great pleasure of visiting Boston for the first time with Sara and Jim. Between the Freedom Trail and the nation's first restaurant, the Union Oyster House, I saw quite a lot of the area.

As we sat at the bar in the oyster house, watching the battle of the Sox (the Red Sox won), I kept looking around for Sam Adams. In a city so historic, part of me really believed that he might still be moseying around town.

Unfortunately, this was clearly not the case. However, I was able to enjoy a drink at the Cheers at Faneuil Hall (which landed me a Cheers cocktail glass...I'm such a tourist).
After traversing the city almost two complete times, which led to an accidental following of the Freedom Trail, I feel as if I have a pretty good grasp on the city (not directionally, clearly, but an idea as to what Boston has to offer).

And with such extensive research, I can confidently say that it was everything I could have imagined, and so much more. It's a city of history, great (great) shopping and so much pride, especially in the realm of athletics.

While I can say I learned a lot about the history of the Northeast, I can say I also learned a lot about Boston sports fans. It's been said that between the Patriots (ahem), Red Sox, Bruins and Celtics, Boston has one of the largest fan bases in the nation. And everywhere you look, this fact becomes more and more evident. With every piece of history I saw, there was also a pair of red socks nearby, spewing off team trivia.

With all the knowledge I took away from such an information-filled city, one fact really stuck with me: Kevin Youkilis has a secret obsession with Mexican food and his favorite summer drink is a Margarita.

...Talk about a girl who knows her baseball stats.