And since we're talking about bikes — as bitched about above, you're out of luck when it comes to public transport options after one o'clock. For that reason, among a great many others (health, environmental, general having of good times), owning a bike in this city is an investment worth making. Don't believe all the naysayers who whine about Boston's inhospitality toward bicycles. It's gotten better — a lot better — in the past few years, and it continues to improve. It's a sound financial decision as well: you'll save many dollars on cab fare (taxis in Boston are some of the most expensive in the country). More than the practical uses of finances and transport, there is a singular magic to pedaling through the city late at night. You own the roads, hear the hum of the streetlights, witness the skulkers skulking, the rats scuttling across alleys, the secret, quiet pre-dawn life. It gives you a vantage of the place sans the day-time distractions of honking Hondas and roaring buses. A euphoria results from certain late-night rides. You'll find it ups your love for this place like nothing else.

And let's not forget using your own two legs. Just as zooming around the city on a bike late at night can edge against the sublime, walking itself presents specific pleasures as well. One of the best parts about this city is its size. It's walkable and it's safe. Give yourself some hours, say between two and four in the morning, and walk from Mission Hill to Davis Square, or Charlestown to Back Bay. In Boston, when the hour's late and the squares are sleeping, it's just a matter of choosing your own adventure.

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