Boston, My Boston

In writing this I notice that this is my first blog post since 9/11. Strange, or perhaps not.

I have been away. Life sometimes becomes a conveyor belt Cul-de-sac, taking you away before bringing you back, Hopefully having seen and learned a few things along the way.

Much like the last entry, today’s is built on sadness, but bolstered by love and hope. In my 9/11 entry I wrote of being a witness, a participant in mourning, as regrowth began to overtake the ruins of Ground Zero. With Boston I write as a broken hearted lover whose outstretched arms simply wont reach.

In 2009 I answered a call. We had never met, but she held my heart for many years. Her name was New England. Rarely does reality make shadows of our dreams. Rarer still, does that reality overtake those dreams and become the source of light that now guides us.

I first stopped in Boston on my way to a writing conference. Before leaving Austin I had bought Red Sox tickets. I did it for my father who passed two years prior. He loved baseball. I hated baseball. I was there as a cultural anthropologist. I wanted to visit the venerable Fenway Park, sacred ground for so many practicing a religion I did not understand. I was not ready for what happened next. As soon as I passed through the gates and saw the field for the first time, I felt it. That tingle. That thing! My excitement grew and midway during the eight inning, A Red Sox tradition shot a laser into my heart. I stood in the midst of 40,000 people singing Sweet Caroline, I’d never felt such energy! I was hooked. I found religion. After the game I left Fenway and headed across Yawkey Way to the souvenir shop and bought all the items I could carry for the altar that would be my passion from that moment forward. I would see 3 more games before I left Boston. I walked in a hater. I walked out a Red Sox pimp and ambassador. I have no doubt this will be a lifetime appointment.

I was in Boston as it mourned the loss of its favorite son, Ted Kennedy. As his body left his home in Hyannis on it’s way to Boston, I hopped on the T and down to Boston Commons. In the gleam of the gold domed Capital I waited with my fellow Bostonians as the black limos slowly passed along the cobble stoned streets, carrying his flag draped coffin and family. I watched as the family placed their hands on the glass wearing compassionate, brave smiles. It was hard to tell whether we were there for them, or they for us. I had already decided that Boston would be my future home. I was now one of them. For a city so large it is amazing the sense of community that exists there.

Free Hugs

This past Monday I watched with heartbroken horror as insanity broke tranquility. As the joy of a state holiday, Patriots Day, and the bodies, lives and hearts were pierced with the shrapnel of madness. I sat helpless in Austin as I reached, but could not catch the tears of my adopted town. My own fell as well, as shock turned to sadness and anger. “You don’t fuck with Boston!” screamed my heart.

Earlier today I watched President Obama in Boston at an interfaith service. I watched him do what he does so well, but has sadly had to do all too often; Bring solace to the senseless. I have never wanted to be a Bostonian more, and though I will not be there as soon as I’d like, I will be there. Boston is my town. I am Boston Strong.


Published in: on April 18, 2013 at 4:30 PM  Comments (6)  
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