So we’ve hit a midway point in our summer itinerary, and for some this may be alarming. "But I never saw the ocean!" you might say. Well, don't fret; we have ideas for cramming in all that summer goodness into a long weekend, or the middle of the week‚ or whenever you have time. Relax! It's summer.
1. Go see Shakespeare on the Common — There are a few good reasons for this, the first being: It’s free. (There’s a suggested donation, and a fee if you’d like to rent a chair.) Second: This year’s show is “Love’s Labour’s Lost,” a comedy (yay!) that doesn’t end in marriage, which was rare (modern!). The story was rewritten for contemporary times and adapted for the silver screen by Kenneth Branagh, starring Alicia Silverstone and Emily Mortimer in 2000, but this is much more satisfying. Pull up a piece of lawn, pack a bag of picnic snacks and enjoy this early Shakespearean tale that explores the still-current issue of the blinding delusions of the male gaze.
2. Head out to the islands — Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket are grand, but let's be honest: near impossible to take in on a day trip. Hop a ferry from Long Wharf North for $17 (students and seniors for $12) and travel to the seven stops within this surprisingly close oasis. You can go for a dip at Spectacle Island (lifeguarded) or Lovells Island (unsupervised), or get in a day of hiking at Peddocks Island or Worlds End — which is technically a peninsula, but no one’s counting. Come back for free tunes from Boston-area ensembles and Berklee students on weekend afternoons.
3. Dine al fresco — This might seem like common sense, but take as many meals as you can outdoors. Despite common misconceptions, this isn’t limited to the people-watching patios of Newbury Street and the South End. Have breakfast in the courtyard at the BPL, grab lunch from the gaggle of rotating food trucks on the Rose Kennedy Greenway, and snag picnic takeaway the Copley Farmers Market (on Tuesday and Fridays) or Beacon Hill Bistro, where they’ll prep a basket for you to take on a quick stroll to the Commons. No reservations necessary.