Finance fishing boats

Boston is rich in history and food

School is back and if I was still a student, I’d have water for the oft-awarded “How I Spent My Summer Vacation” essay. We recently returned home from visiting my sister and her husband at their home in Newton Center, Mass., six miles west of Boston, but mostly at their new vacation home – on Nye’s Neck in North Falmouth on Cape Cod. The latter, from its aft pool and hot tub by the Atlantic Ocean, languid day after day, offered jaw-dropping views of pink, yellow, orange, blue, and steel-gray sunsets; not to mention the 180-degree daytime views of a floating lighthouse and a multitude of fishing boats and other motorized or sailing boats. We spent hours on their patio sipping adult drinks from mugs labeled “Seabrink” and wrapped in beach towels with the same nickname. The former owners dubbed the estate after its original builder/owner – an MC Brink, who started the CI Brink Sign Co. which installed the now famous 1940 CITGO sign at 660 Beacon St. in Kenmore Square, visible from the Red Sox’s Fenway Park and along the historic Boston Marathon. Originally from Sweden, Charles Iver Brink immigrated to Boston in 1892 and soon after started his business. In 1914 he built what would become “Seabrink”, which was added some thirty years ago. It was Brink’s son, John, who ran the sign company in 1965, when Cities Service Oil Company replaced its original green and white trefoil logo with its iconic neon trimark. Today’s CITGO panel features thousands of new-version energy-efficient LEDs that turn off at midnight every day and can withstand extreme temperatures and winds. My husband Eric took photos of the famous CITGO sign when he ran the Boston Marathon in April. This trip he completed another classic New England race: the 50th edition of the historic seven-mile Falmouth Road Race, which begins in Woods Hole and meanders along the Atlantic Ocean until it arrives in Falmouth. Heights. When I lived and raced in Boston, I used to enjoy cocktails at the Eliot Lounge in Boston, where the race’s founder, the late Tommy Leonard, was a bartender. To celebrate Eric’s sweaty survival and solid finish, we feasted on calamari, fried clams, Haddock sandwiches, clam chowder and Sam Adams summer beer at a local outdoor restaurant. In fact, all week we maintained a steady diet of seafood and history…lots and lots of seafood, and lots and lots of history. After a lunch of delicious clam and pastrami chowder and Reuben sandwiches at the Silver Lounge Restaurant, my brother-in-law accompanied us to the first house in town – The Elnathan Nye House at 33 Old Main Road in North Falmouth. The oldest part of this 2 ½ story house was built in 1735; its interior is particularly well preserved, with three surviving beehive ovens, plaster and lath walls and period woodwork. The property’s barn may also date from the 18th century. On one of our best nights, we steamed clams at home, using our fingers to remove the siphons, tossing the shells into a shellfish bowl, swirling the clams in hot water to dislodge any grit or sand, and finally, dipping them in butter. and put them in our mouth. Delicious !

Another evening, we coated swordfish steaks with a mixture of mayonnaise, black pepper, lemon zest and oregano; the mayonnaise prevents the fish from sticking to the grill and the marinade is delicious! By far, I ate the best meal of my vacation on Day 1, after my sister picked us up from the airport and took us to my favorite part of Boston – the North End, or Italian Quarter, where live Italian Americans go to school, work, raise a family and die. At Carmelina’s on Hanover Street, we feasted on fried calamari, black angus beef carpaccio and penne gorgonzola with sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, roasted garlic, parmesan and cream. From the North End, Pamela drove us to Cambridge, where an exhibition honored the forgotten souls of Brattle Street/Tory Row: the slaves who lived and worked the land, as well as those whose work on the Caribbean plantations helped fund the grand mansions of those loyal to the Crown of England. The display is made up of two iron “tree” circles – an outer circle and a smaller inner circle. Blue glass bottles are placed at the end of the branches to form bottle trees strung with solar lights that light up at dusk. Slavery was legal in Massachusetts until 1783. The colony served as a New England slave trade center as early as 1645, when a Massachusetts-built slave ship sailed from Boston to Cape Verde, where merchants bought Africans to sell them into slavery either at their next port in Barbados or on their return to the mainland British colonies. Some Cambridge families made their fortunes through bonded labor in Jamaica and/or enslaved people in their homes and estates. Powerful. From Cambridge, we traveled home to Newton via Watertown, where 2013 Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was apprehended in a boat in the late Dave Henneberry’s backyard on Franklin Street. We asked a teenager where the house was and he pointed to the house, his own house, saying he didn’t live there when the shooting happened. The bombing carried out by Dzhokhar and his brother, who died in the shootout with the police, killed three people, including an 8-year-old boy; left hundreds injured; and resulted in the subsequent death of an MIT police officer. Meanwhile, Dzhokhar, now 28, still faces a federal death sentence for his crime. Boston, indeed, is rich in history… and in gastronomy. There’s an endless supply of both, and I can’t wait to sample more on my next trip east.