Sunday, September 25, 2016

European Odyssey - Part 2: Crisis averted, Cannoli eaten

Since we arrived in Boston at 8AM EST and the branch of my financial institution I needed to contact didn't open until 10AM MST, we had 4 hours to walk the city before I needed to find a quiet place to sit down and make the call to figure out the mess with my debit card.  At 8AM on a late January Saturday morning there was almost no cars or people on the street, it felt like we had the whole city to ourselves.  It was sunny and the air was clear and brisk.

We had our Charlie Cards and we were good to go.  Photo by S.



The Old State House


Boston City Hall

Restaurant sign in the North End.
We found Mike's and decided to come back a little bit later for pastries.


Amy asked Paul to take her around Boston to look for Sheldon, we gave her a hand up.



A memorial in the garden of the Old North Church.


Window at the Old North Church.  Old graffiti scratched into the top window pane.


Winter sunlight inside the Old North Church.
The Old North Church Steeple.

The plaque commemorating Paul Revere's ride on the steeple of the Old North Church.
After following the Freedom Trail through the North End we decided to stop in at a nearby restaurant called Theo's Cozy Corner.  Tiny restaurant with HUGE breakfasts.  It was a nice spot to get out of the cold, enjoy a great cooked to order breakfast, and rest for a bit before setting out again.  Whatever you do, don't ask to use their restroom, getting to it involves going into the kitchen and through a trap door in the floor.

Breakfast at Theo's.
After Theo's we headed by back to Mike's Pastries.  While I grabbed us a table and called my financial institution to figure out my debit card problem, S. got us pastries.

Amy has never heard "Leave the gun, take the cannoli" but she was all about taking the cannoli.
After about 30 minutes on the phone I discovered what had happened with my debit card.  Earlier in the week when I stopped by a branch to put the travel warning on my account the teller who helped me asked if I wanted the warning on BOTH debit card numbers.  I had received my new debit card in the mail and activated the previous week and shredded my old card.  The cards had different numbers.  Somehow when I activated the new card they never deactivated the old card, even though it was destroyed and not in use.  I told the teller REPEATEDLY to close the old debit card number.  I even handed him the new card and stated 3 times "This should be the ONLY card number on the account, close the other number out, I do not want it active I have no way of using it."  He kept saying "Don't you want to keep it open, just in case?". 

Well despite me insisting I did not want it open, he went ahead and left it open without telling me.  It was the old debit card number that was cloned and used for the fraudulent purchases the night we flew to Boston.  So that was the number that had been frozen (like it should have been when I asked days before), but my current debit card number was unaffected by the fraud and was still open and ready for use.  I was told that over $1,000 in charges had been blocked but the first charge of around $300 had been put through.  They told me I could get it back and all I would have to do would be to file a police report when I got back to Logan.  I was more relieved than I can say and we celebrated by helping me keep my New Year's Resolution...eating Boston Cream Pie in Boston.




I'm not exactly sure where heaven is, but I suspect it's somewhere in the North End of Boston.
Feeling full yet about 100 pounds lighter with the stress of the fraud problem relieved, we set out to find the nearest ATM to test out my debit card, and established that it did in fact work.  We resumed following the freedom trail and saw a farmer's market and the Paul Revere house along the way.  We stopped at the Greenway Park in the North End on some swinging benches and enjoyed the sunshine before moving on to Quincy Market where we enjoyed the antics of a street performer.








Photo by S.










After taking in Quincy Market we walked to the harbor and then headed back to the airport early.  We ate dinner at the airport location of Durgin Park.  We huddled with Amy and reviewed our day's search for Sheldon and found that none of us has located any clue to Sheldon's whereabouts.  Amy drowned her sorrow in Clam chowder.  I had to have the lobster roll with baked beans.  It was a really satisfying way to end our first full day of travel.




Next up, Cavorting in Cork!

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