There is a 47-year-old mother of two who spends her lunch breaks sitting in the elegant reception area outside the governor's office, waiting. Waiting for Gov. Charlie Baker.
"I'm waiting for him to follow the law. I'm waiting for him to do his sworn duty to protect the people of Massachusetts," said Andrea Honore, a Weymouth resident dead set against the building of a gas compressor by the new Fore River Bridge.
At the urging of U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, federal regulators will hold a listening session in Weymouth to hear from residents opposed to a plan to build a natural gas compressor station by the Fore River. It'll be the biggest and loudest display of opposition to the project. Meanwhile, Honore is conducting a quiet and persistent demonstration nearly every day right outside Baker's door.
"I'm waiting for him to tell the [Department of Environmental Protection] to tell them to do their jobs, follow the law, follow the policies. It's exhausting trying to convince people of the obvious," said Honore, who fears that the facility will pollute the surrounding area. She disagrees with reports saying the plant won't pose much harm to the air and water of the neighboring communities. Since Honore began her sit-ins in 2017, gas safety has become even more of a touch point for those concerned about the impact of natural gas.
Nearly every weekday, Honore leaves her office in the Financial District and walks the half mile to the State House, sometimes grabbing a smoothie in place of lunch.
"Usually by the time I get here, I've like power-walked up here and I'm sweating, and these the Rangers are like, 'What is your problem?' Hey come on now, give me a break," she told WGBH News as she climbed the stairs toward the entrance of the State House.
Honore hasn't been able to meet or confront Baker, aside from the time she called in to one of his appearances on WGBH News' Boston Public Radio. Her vigil has publicized opposition to the compressor project, which would help speed natural gas to customers.
Honore said the strong opposition to the project in Weymouth has kept the governor from visiting the city and lead him to ignore petitions, postcards, letters and rallies against the compressor.
"I just started getting really sad about it and I said, 'Gosh, you know what you can't ignore? Somebody's butt sitting on your couch outside your door,'" she said.
Baker had been tight-lipped about the project, but when reporters asked him why he granted approval for an air quality permit earlier this year, the governor said he did it because the issue is a federal matter and not up to the state.
"Given the federal rules that we were operating under and all the rest and the results of our very comprehensive review, we basically had no choice other than to grant it," Baker said in January.
Honore and other opponents in Weymouth didn't buy Baker's explanation and say there's a lot more the state can do to appeal or challenge permits that have already been granted by federal regulators.
"We were all just livid because his hands are emphatically not tied," she said. Honore says the state can still fight the project, which is opposed by nearly every local elected official except Baker.
"The great thing would be to deny all remaining final permits. Period," she said.
Before the permits were granted, Honore conducted her decorous sit-in from March to July 2017, until Baker agreed to fund an air quality study before deciding on the air permit. But after the governor agreed a few weeks ago with Enbridge, the company behind the project, that air quality won't suffer, at least according to federal standards, Honore was back at the State House and back on the governor's couch, greeting the State Troopers and staff of the governor's office nearly every weekday.
"Everybody is happy to see me except Gov. Baker. He's walked by me about four or five times," she said of her time outside the office in 2017.
Baker has stood by his decision and the validity of the air quality study.
"This was an air quality permit, period. Built around federal standards associated with this and we did all the work. It's probably the most comprehensive analysis within that framework that anybody's done anywhere around one of these permits, and it passed," Baker said.
Friday was Honore's 91st lunch break in the governor's office. She's dropped off documents and petitions, and she speaks with staff every day, but still has not spoken with Baker himself.
"I do this because it's something I can do ... and basically just be a living reminder seated on a couch. Can't ignore Weymouth, can't ignore us," she said.
Baker says the state's study of the project shows it meets all the federal guidelines and his administration reached out this week to sit down with opponents.
Still, Rep. Lynch is unimpressed. As a majority member of the House's Rail and Pipelines committee, he's convinced the Department of Transportation to hold a public hearing in Weymouth some time this year.
Correction: The original version of this story stated that the compressor project in Weymouth would help speed natural gas to local customers, implying residential use. The gas brought through Weymouth would be distributed to regional, national and international power generators.