Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Things Deb loves about Boston: The North End

This past Friday night I went to meet my friend Amy in the North End, where she lived up until a couple days ago. She was running late, so I wandered down Hanover Street and happened upon a street festival or "feast" as Amy called it. Now, I'm not sure what this "feast" entails for the Catholic Population or for residents of the North End, but happening upon this little fair so unexpectedly represented one of my favorite things about living in Boston--sometimes you just have no idea what you are gonna get. But when you are in the North End it is usually strange and involves delicious food.

This fork and spoon were cemented into the sidewalk. I found this entertaining the first time we walked by, and made a point to not only take a picture but to step on them. Then, when walking by a second time, I saw a three-year-old boy do the same thing. I was unsurprised by this.

I have no idea what kind of performance could take place on this stage. But you can bet it would either be super awesome, or really, really boring.

That's right, friends. That is a chocolate-dipped frozen banana. I wished I could have gotten it with peanuts but, alas, they had none... I also asked the stand's proprietors if they had ever seen Arrested Development. They hadn't, but informed me that they were asked that question at least once at every Feast.

I wanted to play this but didn't want to put down my frozen banana, and since I was alone there was no one to hold it for me while I played. Next time, for sure.

This is a deep-fried rice spinach rice ball. With Marinara Sauce. To be honest I was underwhelmed with the rice ball itself, but the sauce was KICKIN. I also ate it while walking down the street, which I think, when you are having an adventure, is the only way to snack.

I wonder who lives in this house. It looks super old, like Paul Revere lived there or something. I like the plants hanging from the fire escape and the ivy covered wall that encloses the back yard. Ivy is pretty cool, though a little scary. Sometimes I see houses where the ivy covers the windows. I wouldn't like that. I would feel like the plant was trying to eat my house.

This is the Modern Pastry Shop in the North End. Everyone goes to Mike's cause it's bigger, but Modern is better I think. Also, I have a friend who knows the owner, an elderly Italian woman named Pina, who I like to imagine makes all the pastries by hand, wearing a flour-covered apron and a hair net to cover her thick, long, salt-and-pepper hair.

Inside this box is a piece of Ricotta Pie. I meant to take a picture of the pie but I got so excited to eat it that I forgot. Rest assured. It. Was. Delicious. And very pretty.


Because Amy lived in the North End, her landlord was, as you might guess, Italian. This is one of two examples of the notes he would leave for his residents. This note was taped to the front door with a copy of the ticket Alberto received.

Direct Transcription
I got ticket from the City for Trash. The Trash be put out in the morning don't a night. Each of you going to payd $5.00. -Alberto

This note was taped to a wall in her hallway.

Direct Transcription:
donty takeyoffy they notea offg ifg ua donty likeg ya cany liveg buta bey shamegofa u lygoy toa puty they notea againy gay dontg takea offy. - Alberto

  Please do not remove this note from this wall. If you don't like this note you don't have to live here. You should be ashamed of your self if you don't like this note. Again, please don't remove this note.


  1. there's always money in the banana stand.

  2. I love the North End, definitely one of my favorite places in Boston to roam around

  3. the modern is my fave too.

    love, heather h.