For my birthday last month, Sue had bought tickets to see Lindsey Stirling and Evanescence in concert at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield, MA on Wednesday 07/18/18.
Because it's a little over a 2 hour drive, we got a room at the Comfort Inn not far from the Xfinity Center in Foxborough as we knew the concert would end late. And it did; it was after 11:00 pm by the time we even got to the car.
As we were packing for the trip Wednesday morning, Sue mentioned that she had never been to Marblehead, MA and thought it was fairly close. I had never been there either, but friends have always mentioned how beautiful it was.
I checked the map, and it looked like about an hour and quarter drive from Marblehead to the hotel. So, if we got going right away, there would be plenty of time for a quick visit, get to the hotel, have dinner, and get over to the concert by 7:00 pm. We put a press on and were out the door around 10:30.
It took about 2 hours to get to Lighthouse Point in the Chandler Hovey Park overlooking Marblehead Harbor. What a spectacular view that is! And it was just a perfect day to sit in the benches and watch two groups of small sailboats racing outside the harbor. The largest group consisted of 8 foot cat rigged prams, and the second group were 14 to 16 foot sloops.
Sailboats racing off Marblehead Harbor
Here's a Yelp! review I wrote for Lighthouse Point in the Chandler Hovey Park, Marblehead, MA:
We were having such a good time that we stayed a little longer than we had planned, and didn't head out for the hotel until about 3:00 pm. I wasn't concerned as even if the drive took a couple of hours we'd be fine. We even stopped for about 20 minutes in Swampscott for frozen yogurt to hold us over until dinner. We sat in a bench overlooking the seawall that you see on The Weather Channel when they broadcast during storms, waves pluming 30 feet into the air after crashing into the wall.
But when we got to Route 93, traffic began to bog down. By the time we got to the tunnel, it was a parking lot. We must have averaged 5 miles an hour though the tunnel, and then maybe 10 for the next 40 minutes or so. And then it got a little better: 30 mph in a 55 mph zone because traffic going both ways just crawled.
Sue and I shook our heads and sighed, wondering how anyone could possibly put up with that as a commuter. Sure, you have to have a job, and the good jobs are in the city, but to spend hours and hours of your life in stressful bumper to bumper traffic day after day after year is just mind boggling...
The whole of our drive on 93 was slow going, with only the briefest of runs getting up to 55 mph. We didn't get to the hotel until just after 5:30 pm, over 2 and a half hours of just stupid traffic. Fortunately, there was a 99 Restaurant next to the hotel, so we had a short, but nice dinner, and were at our seats inside the Xfinity Center at 6:50 pm. Whew!
Here's a Yelp! review I wrote for the Comfort Inn in Foxboro, MA:
Here's a Yelp! review I wrote for the Infinity Parking facility for the Xfinity Center:
But all of that grief was so worth it! What a show Lindsey Stirling put on, and then Evanescence (Amy Lee) just knocked it out of the park. What a great show! Unfortunately, the pictures we got aren't all that good because security doesn't allow regular cameras so everything had to be taken by our phones. And no matter even if we would have had really good cameras, the grandeur of it all would never have been able to be captured anyway.
Here's a Yelp! review I wrote for the Xfinity Center:
As soon as we got back to the hotel around midnight, we were out; never work up until 7:00 am. We went downstairs and ate a nice breakfast before leaving at 9:00 am. But it was a long drive back home with traffic on 495 all the way to almost Chelmsford just crawling in places. It wasn't as bad as the day before on 93, but it was stop-and-go most of the way.
We swung by Bed 'n Biscuit in Alton and scooped Beau up before heading home. As soon as we pulled into the driveway, he got out of the car and just ripped around the yard. Man, was he all wound up! We were unpacked in about 10 minutes, and grateful to be home out of the traffic.
From our seats inside the Xfinity Center before the start of the concert.
Lindsey Stirling getting things rocking!
Lindsey Stirling racing across the stage while still playing!
Amy Lee of Evanescence stirs the crowd with her penetrating voice while playing the piano.
Amy Lee at the mic
A little better picture of Amy Lee at the mic.
Evanescence in lights in the background.
Amy Lee and Lindsey Stirling performing together.
Another shot of Amy Lee and Lindsey Stirling performing together.