Last night I ended up going to a staff party… which was a mistake. My team lost the scavenger hunt (I demand a recount!) but, mostly, it was because it was the most exhausting week of my life and waiting around until after midnight and watching people drink instead of going to sleep is not what I wanted to be doing. Before I went to bed, I remembered daylight savings time ending. Do you think I then remembered to set my clock ahead an hour? No!
I woke up and slowly got ready for my BookCrossing friend, tobysrus, to come pick me up. Thinking I had over an hour to get ready, I took my time. Then I checked my email and noticed the time on the laptop. Ha! I had about 10 minutes! So I rushed around and made it down with about a minute to spare. My coworkers were all sitting there, waiting for their shuttle to the airport. My friend arrived and we headed out to Salem.
She pointed out things to me along the way, including the university where they filmed some of Good Will Hunting. I didn’t get to see the House of the Seven Gables during my last trip to Salem, so I was thrilled I got to do so this time. It was neat to be inside this house that helped inspire parts of Hawthorne’s book. And it was nice to get a few more snarfs. I enjoyed the tour.
After seeing the house, we drove to the center of town and parked. We visited several of the adorable little stores along the main roads, including the used book store with its floor-to-ceiling stacks of books, a few Salem touristy stores, and a store I’d been to years back and wanted to go back to that had tons of Harry Potter merch. It took a few tries for us to find that store, but once there, I bought quite a few things. Hufflepuffs get little respect and so to finally find the store AND to discover they were having a Hufflepuff Appreciation sale that weekend was PERFECT! I bought a hat, because I didn’t have one already.
We also stopped by the witches memorial so that I could release a copy of The Lace Reader which actually got caught and journaled by a reader. Even though the reader didn’t seem to love it as much as I did, it was still a good catch. And releasing it was a great way to start the fun portion of my little vacation with my BookCrossing friend, though there was lots of fun to come.
Tobysrus and I headed to the Peabody Museum. She had been there a number of times already, so I was pretty much on my own for a little while. I felt inspired by the museum to come up with an idea for a novel I have in the works. I loved the variety of pieces, from a special exhibit about Indian art to a permanent installation in a hall about ships in the area. Some other things I liked included a sculpture that was covered in pieces from manga, an ivory sphere, a Chinese lion head for a dance, and models of ships.
Of course, I did take the obligatory witch burning photo as well. I’m not sure why I thought I should look so happy in this photo. LOL!
After Salem, we went to a small restaurant near where tobysrus lives in Cambridge and I had one of the best meals of my life (I seem to recall it was pumpkin ravioli? And I seem to recall wanting to order a second plate as soon as the first was finished, and would have done if I were still hungry). It was great chatting and relaxing after a difficult conference, knowing I had a few days ahead with more fun. But I was glad to have been able to spend a little more time in Salem!