As someone who just moved from historic Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, I am no stranger to sightseers. I’ve snapped their pictures as they posed by the cannon that sat outside my apartment, stood in a line full of confederate soldiers at the grocery store, and walked past many a ghost tour group that’s collected outside my residence. Moving to a new state has brought out my inner tourist. I’ve been trying to immerse myself in the New England culture that has now become my home – I’ve eaten lobster pot pie, I’ve begrudgingly tried oysters for the first time, and now I’m anxiously awaiting the blizzard that is supposed to blanket the area over the next 24 hours.
Last weekend I took a short road trip to Mystic, Connecticut. The Mystic Aquarium was the first stop, and I was eager to see the only Beluga whales in New England. They’re quite majestic looking creatures, with jovial little smiles on their faces. The jellyfish and penguin exhibits were also enjoyable; the small scale of this aquarium allows you to get much closer to animals and makes for much better pictures.
After observing all the sea life I made my way to downtown Mystic Seaport, a quaint town along the water perfect for an afternoon of shopping and snacking. As I made my way to a coffeehouse boasting the best hot chocolate in Connecticut, a horn pierced through the cold air alerting the public that the bridge was about to be raised in order to let a tug boat pass through. I watched the whole process with amazement, snapping pictures and smiling wide– as locals went about business as usual.
I completed my Sunday of sightseeing by eating dinner at Mystic Pizza, the inspiration for the 1988 rom com classic by the same name, starring Julia Roberts and (the amazing) Lili Taylor. The interior was a bit campy with Julia’s face plastered everywhere and the movie playing on a TV, but that’s what being an unabashed tourism spot is all about. The calamari was fresh and the pizza was delicious, I ended the night showing no shame by buying the ‘A Slice of Heaven’ shirt.
Next weekend I’ll be leaving my fashionable fanny pack at home.
I’ll be Maryland bound to catch up with family and friends!