When I was five, we moved from Altoona, Pennsylvania to Boston so my dad could attend Gordon College. We lived in a student apartment in the basement of the college which was located beside the park in front of the Isabella Gardner Museum. I played in the park, went to Farragut School, and got to go to Saturday morning art programs for kids down the way at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. We’d attend church at Park Street Church and, when I was lucky, after church I’d get to ride the famous Swan Boats across the street in the Public Garden.
Four years later, when we moved to Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania, I got teased unmercifully because of my Bostonian accent. As if people from Philadelphia area talk normal!
My first year of college I went back to Boston. By that time Gordon College had moved out to Wenham and among other discoveries developed a taste for steamer clams. That and lobster … and I enjoyed more than my fair share. So eventually I developed a shellfish allergy … I guess too much of a good thing.
One of the things I love about doing Canada/New England cruises is that it gets me back to Boston and usually a stop in Gloucester which is just down the road from Wenham. And this year once again I get to sail out of Boston on a Grand New England cruise to some of the best ports on the coast of Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. I’ve had fun working on my talks including a fun, new one “Cockroach of the Sea” which isn’t about another new RCCL mega ship but lobster which, way back when, because of its abundance and low-class reputation, was known as cockroach of the sea. This is a “Lobster” cruise featuring, among other things, a down east lobster bake … and me allergic to lobster.
This is on a brand new American Cruise Lines small ship, the AMERICAN CONSTITUTION. American is a sister company of Pearl Seas Cruises with whom I have been spending time in Cuba, on the Great Lakes and Canada/New England. The ship hold onlys 175 guests and is an U.S. American flagged ship which means it was built in the U.S. and has a U.S. crew enabling it to sail between U.S. ports. So we’ll be sailing from Boston, to Camden, Rockford, Bar Harbor, Provincetown, Martha’s Vineyard, Newport, Gloucester, Boothbay and Portland. Lot’s and lots of lobster! American Cruise Lines is pretty much all-inclusive with rates starting at around $6085 per person, so it is very nice!
I tell my wife that if we had all the money in the world we’d have our own yacht, but then I’d have all kinds of maitenance and personnel hassles. Now, with ships like PEARL MIST and AMERICAN CONSTITUTION, I get to enjoy “my yacht” with a few friends, someone else worries about all the hassles, and i get paid for it. While I love all kinds of cruising with lots of great companies, there is definitely something special about small ship cruising. We have no casino, no rock climbing wall, no water park and we don’t sell water, drinks, the restaurants with the “good” food, Botox treatments, teeth whitening, or art work. And there are no lines!