Casey goes to Boston

February 2014

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Tech team Peadie Casey Angland is attending the IPREX conference in Boston and is blogging about the experience. Here’s her first report.

As I stepped off the plane after a near 24-hour journey the crisp winter air instantly awakened me. I had arrived in Boston, Massachusetts - in winter. It’s fair to say I wasn’t fully prepared for it.

I rushed to a cab and after a short ride we pulled up to the Renaissance Waterfront Hotel – or more importantly we pulled up to the place where I could crawl into bed (a proper bed with extended leg room!).

After two plane rides and some seriously bad airport coffee I would have welcomed a sack stuffed with hay but what I got was a spacious, modern room with a large bed, sitting chair and desk. A very pleasant surprise.

My head hit the pillow and I didn’t budge until 1.30pm the following afternoon (a further testament to the bed and comfortable surroundings).

After ample rest I decided it was time to brave the winter winds and explore Boston.

I’m not entirely sure what I was expecting - if the movies were anything to go by, I would run into a charmingly handsome, misunderstood gangster named Billy (or Mickey – something ending in a vowel) which would lead to a whirlwind of events.

This was not the case. I was instead greeted by a gang of construction workers blasting out the original Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch version of Good Vibrations – fitting given Mark Wahlberg’s Boston heritage.

After feeling inspired by the ‘Good Vibrations’ coming from the construction site, I decided to kick off my tour with a quick stroll along the waterfront – beautiful but incredibly cold. After just 15 minutes, I could swear I no longer had a nose.

Not being able to brave the wintery conditions for much longer, I ducked into the downtown area of South Boston to map out the train stations for places to visit in the coming days.

As you may have guessed – I’m finding it a bit cold here but the sun has been shining, making it bearable to walk around outdoors (layered up with various merino products I might add).

So far I have strolled through the Boston Common and Public Gardens, walked the Black Heritage Trail, visited the Afro-American History Museum and explored the Harvard Business school campus the beautiful surrounding area of Cambridge.

While I’ve been here only a few days, I have found Boston to be beautiful, charming and full of character. It’s rich in history – particularly the civil rights history here is remarkable.

Restaurants are in abundance with varied and delicious offerings and the people are overall very friendly and willing to help. As a young, solo female traveller with a large map extended in front of me, it’s nice to encounter a friendly face - special mention to the folks at the Visitor Centre in Boston Common - helpful, informative and genuinely kindhearted.

The 2014 IPREX Global Leaders Conference kicks off tomorrow and I am sure to learn more about the city through this – not just its history, but the way the city operates from the communications and marketing points of view.

Needless to say I am looking forward to the conference and to becoming more closely acquainted with the city. So until the next post, thank you Boston for being a spectacular host thus far.

CA