Today started not *quite* bright and early (having gotten in from my train trip to visit my mother late last night -- perhaps another entry to talk about that later), but we wandered over to rufinia's to help her move. It was a small but sufficient group, and we got the truck loaded up reasonably quickly, thanks to the combined packing expertise of peregrinning and new_man. Thence over to her new place (which msmemory directed me to as "midway between Patri's place and Gideon's old one", up on Tufts Hill), where we bucket-brigaded stuff up the stairs lickety-split. Damned good exercise: I came out hurting a little, but it was good hurt.
Thence a quick dash over to Fenway Park for the Sox game: we missed the National Anthem, but got there before the first pitch. hungrytiger had sold us a couple of tickets that he couldn't use. They were standing-room "seats", up on the Green Monster, and turn out to be a really great location: we were directly across the park from the hitters, so we had a near-perfect view, and we were sheltered by stuff above us so we didn't sunburn. A fine place to enjoy the game from.
The game itself was a reminder of why the Sox are so much fun to watch, because you really never know what's going to happen. Beckett started off pitching his usual game, giving up a couple of runs in the 1st before settling down and doing very well after that. Mostly, the game was a bit on the quiet side, with adequate but not great defense (Beckett got pulled after 3 for reasons that I'm still not clear on) and no run support. By the 7th, I was coming to the conclusion that the most exciting thing we were going to see was the Wave managing to get five full rotations around the stadium (due to a really determined group out behind center field). By the 9th things were looking fairly bleak: we were losing 5-zip, and a third of the crowd had left, with msmemory and I scornfully telling the backs that were retreating down Lansdowne Street that they would surely rue the day they gave up on their beloved hometown team.
And then, we got the reminder of why David Ortiz is so valuable for the team: not just that he's a great hitter, but that he's the best *clutch* hitter in the business. With one man on and one out, he hit a double that finally woke the crowd up again. Guys started swinging the bats well. One run came in -- then another, and another, and another. In a fine example of "what the *heck* are you people thinking?", the Orioles intentionally walked Hinske (with a .180-ish average) to load the bases for Cora (with .460-something). That didn't quite pan out, but wound Julio Lugo up with a true Casey at the Bat moment: bottom of the ninth, two men out, bases loaded, full count, with the hometown team down by one run. He hit a grounder between first and second and ran like a bat out of hell to prevent himself from getting thrown out -- which got two runs in, winning the game. The crowd went absolutely nuts, having ended the game with one of those truly great morale-boosters, reminding everyone that you can *never* count the Sox out.
Energized from the game, and having little desire to join the sardines on the T at Kenmore, we set out on foot for Park Street. Along the way, we stumbled across Commonwealth Books, a delightful used bookstore that we hadn't previously encountered. They proved to have an excellent selection of books on period topics (not quite Mac and Moore grade, but close): I picked up two volumes of Melusine Wood's seminal series on period dance ("seminal" == "classic, if rather obsolete"), and msmemory got a two-volume set of Domesdays from the English Enclosures.
Wandering on, we eventually detoured through the Garden (which is magnificent at the moment, all tulips, ducks and cherry blossoms), and drifted onto Charles Street for dinner. We decided to try out the Ristorante Toscano, and that was a good choice. She tried the chicken special, smothered in mushrooms and fontina; I had the tagliatelle special, in a richly-flavored porcini cream sauce with minced prosciutto. Both were excellent, and the restaurant got points for not flinching at our dressed-for-the-ballpark attire. Good solid medium-high-end Italian, well-suited for a nice date.
And thence home. *Very* tired, but it's a well-earned tired...