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Tech journalist since the dark ages. Windows Secrets, LangaList newsletter, Windows Magazine (NetGuide, Home PC), Byte, Popular Computing, yadda yadda yadda. Google me, if it matters.

This feed is mostly personal interest; it's NOT my professional writing. There's tech here, yes, but also lots of general science and some politics and weird humor thrown in.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Exploring Boston: From the Fenway to the Fellsway

Hey, is this thing on? Raise your hands if you can’t read this… :)

What a busy summer! Among other things, I moved from my apartment in Boston’s Fens to one just four miles away, in Medford.

The word “fen,” of course, is an old-English term for a wetland, marsh, or swamp. One specific road (or “way”) along the Boston’s fens is named Fenway; from which the area (and the famous baseball park) get their names.

Similarly, the word Fells is an even older Norse term that originally referred to a high hill or mountain with a naturally treeless summit; above the treeline. Later, it referred to hilltops and hillsides where the trees had been cut down. (Loggers still refer to “felling” a tree or a forest.)

Medford and surrounding towns of Middlesex county have a Fells, in the Middlesex Fells Reservation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middlesex_Fells_Reservation).  I can’t find definitive word on whether the early settlers referred to the area as The Fells because the thin soil of its rocky hills produce somewhat treeless summits; or because of early lumber and forestry operations; but I suspect the latter --- the hills are too low to have anything like a formal treeline. But they do afford some nice views:

Looking south from the Middlesex Fells Reservation; Boston is 6 miles (9km) in the distance (this is a nearly 180 degree panorama, which makes Boston seem further away than it actually is):
  photo 6_zpse373fa72.jpg

Zoomed in:
 photo 7_zpscdfe8437.jpg

But in any case, the colonial-era road or way connecting Boston to the Fells is the “Fellsway;” which my new apartment fronts.

The move, and the subsequent settling in, took a while, as did my back-burner efforts to (slooooowly) prep my condo in New Hampshire for eventual sale, probably next Spring.

In addition to all the move-related stuff, I spent the summer exploring Medford, the North Shore, and much more of Boston, mostly on foot. I’ve finished walking the full length of Boston’s huge and still-growing Harborwalk (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boston_Harborwalk)...

(example view from the northernmost end of the Harborwalk:)

... and the full length of the accessible portions of the Mystic River, where once clipper ships were built, and which is now undergoing an amazing transformation from an industrial waterway to a verdant, linear public park.

Five min. from my apartment:

A portion of the Mystic River greenway is shown here: http://mysticriver.org/storage/pdfs/UTM_Side%20A_PDF_web.pdf 

I also attended over a dozen live concerts, including major acts like Alison Krauss...


and local talents such as the Berklee Gospel and Roots Choir...

and Emperor Norton's Stationary Marching Band:

I also  enjoyed a linear street fair that converted the normally traffic-choked Huntington Ave into a pedestrian park...

...explored a sprawling sculpture exhibit  that took over the area behind the Pru (this is a 20'/6m heron made entirely of twigs and branches)...

 ...and lots more.

As I said: busy summer. :) 

But Fall is around the corner, and it’s time to catch up. I’ll be posting of the summer’s activities in coming days, and should be able to stay more current from here on out.

Hope you all had a great summer, too!