After a very full Friday in Boston, Saturday had just one focus: the Red Sox game. We took it easy in the morning and just had breakfast at the hotel before heading over to Fenway a couple of hours before the game started. Thankfully our journey to Fenway was much less eventful than it was on Friday. Instead of taking (or in mom’s case jumping into) a cab, we used the subway system to get to the game, which was pretty easy since all we had to do was follow the mass of red and blue shirts around us. We couldn’t have asked for better weather for a September baseball game in Boston. It was pretty sunny out and just cool enough to merit buying a Red Sox jacket in the team store. After taking the subway, we spent some time experiencing all of the activity outside the stadium.
I loved Fenway for many reasons. I loved that since this is a smaller, old ballpark, it feels intimate. As much as I enjoyed going to Diamondback games at Chase Field growing up, that place is huge and feels huge. There’s something really great about smaller stadiums (this was something I also liked about Wrigley Field). There’s also a diehard love for the Red Sox that’s unlike anything I’ve seen at any other ballpark. We got into the stadium early and were allowed to hang out in the first few rows for a while, which was lots of fun for us. There were some cute kids on the field for some pre-game event and it was so funny hearing their parents tell the kids to touch the dirt and steal a few blades of grass for them.
Another thing I loved about Fenway is how special they make everything. There are no gimmicks or things done just for show. I feel like the Red Sox organization knows they have unique fans who seriously love the team and they won’t accept anything cheesy or forced. I didn’t expect for a baseball game to get me emotional, but I got choked up twice before the game started. One was when they brought an older man on his wheelchair out to the field and shared his story: he was a lifelong Red Sox fan and hadn’t missed a game on TV with his wife in 60something years. His wife recently passed away and after his family wrote to the Red Sox to try to get him out there for a game and they flew him out to Boston right away. So sweet. Another really special moment was when they brought out two sisters that had been affected by the bombings at the Boston Marathon this past year. They were at the race cheering for some loved ones and were near the finish line when the blasts went off. For one of these sisters, that meant the loss of her legs. But they got through this ordeal together, and walked out on to the field where they each through out two strikes for the first pitch. I had the chills the entire time and was so amazed by their story and strength.
Ever since my parents bought the tickets for this game, I had been looking forward to the 8th inning. It’s a Fenway tradition to have everyone stand and sing “Sweet Caroline” during this part of the game and I couldn’t wait to experience this with my brother. It definitely lived up to my expectations and completed my bucket list item of going to a game at Fenway.
Fun fact: we were sitting right in front of the family of the Yankees pitcher introduced at the end of the song. His mom was so excited to see him pitch and was a lot of fun to listen to.
The Red Sox won the game, which made the day that much better (I really love cheering against the Yankees). After the game, we stuck around the ballpark for a little longer before heading out. Now, Chip hadn’t been feeling that great over the last couple of days, and by the time the game was over he was ready for some stronger cold medicine. We wanted to go to a CVS Minute Clinic to get him a quick appointment to see if he needed antibiotics to really get better, but by the time we got to one that was still open, they had already closed (a bit before their official close time, I might add). Instead, we had to settle with getting a new variety of cold medicine and hope they would get the job done (they didn’t, but more on that in my next post).
Once we finally got Chip some new medicine to try out, we were all getting pretty hungry which in my case often means a smidge cranky (sorry to my family on that…). We took a cab to the downtown area and quickly found a restaurant that didn’t have a wait for the five of us. After dinner we all walked back to the hotel about a mile away. I then spent some time at Beantown Pub with my dad and Alex, which was a lot of fun to have time together over (another) beer. Stay tuned for one more post on Boston and our time in Maine!