Note: If you are planning to be in the Bay Area Sunday, come on by the AN fANfest. Details in the diary here. Hope to see everyone!
For those of you who missed my post on my vacation to the dark side (aka the East Coast), here is the Yankee Stadium section of the trip, and here is Fenway.
Perhaps in complete defiance of a team that was painful to watch for most of the year, I decided that the 2008 season would have to become a little more about baseball and a little less about the A’s. And there seemed no better year to visit the baseball powerhouses of the East than this one; especially with the stadium closure in New York.
I reasoned that if I was going to temporarily dabble in the dark arts, I should keep the visit as brief as possible, so I attended a Friday night game at Yankee Stadium and a Sunday afternoon game at Fenway Park.
First of all, Fenway Park is awesome. There are no two ways about it. From the moment you set foot into the surrounding area, you get the sense that you are a part of something much bigger; something that has been there a lot longer than you; something that your grandparents may have seen, and that your grandchildren will want to. Movies like Fever Pitch don't do this park justice; there is truly nothing like walking up to the brick walls and just feeling baseball.
Unlike the newly-remodeled, newly-built parks that we have grown accustomed to for our baseball needs, Fenway is truly a throwback. Here was my seat:
Fenway has a very "Wrigley" feel; where you know that this is a baseball stadium, not just a venue for the city, where a baseball team plays. Hours before the game, fans crowd into the surrounding square for eating, shopping, and chatting about the Red Sox. The Boston fans I met were incredibly nice, even to me as an A's fan in full green and gold attire, and since we had the good fortune to plan our trip around the A's visit, at least we were assured the home team would win!
What's the East Coast without a little rain delay? The 30 minute break in the game gave us time to tour the stadium; we weren't leaving our seats any other way.
Luckily, the game resumed, just in time for "Sweet Caroline" in the eighth inning. If you haven't heard THAT in Boston, you are missing out!
After the game, we visited the highly overrated Cask'n Flagon, the restaurant/bar just down the street from the stadium, but we left in favor for the newly-opened, completely awesome Bleacher Bar, which is actually just about in center field.
View of the Stadium from the Bleacher Bar:
For those of you who have been to the actual city of Boston, you know that it's fabulous, as well. Restaurants and bars, all with great food and great drinks, line the historic streets, and you can't want fifty feet without seeing something that you once read about in U.S. History class. It's a whole different world from California.
And not that there is any real excuse for the East Coast bias that the sport of baseball seems to show during the season, but it only takes one visit to the historic parks to see why people are so crazy about their baseball. We have the team, but they have the parks; the whole baseball experience, and for one game, at least; it's fun to see it.