Boston made the news big time this week. Unfortunately, it was due to a bombing that wreaked havoc with the Boston Marathon, a race that I remember vividly as a kid growing up in the suburbs. I can remember standing on the sidewalk on upper Beacon Street waving to the runners and seeing if I could recognize anybody. I never stood down by the finish line. Beacon Street was close to my home.
I was lucky to grow up in Boston. Despite its size as a major metropolitan area, it felt very small to me. I learned my way on the MTA (that was before they changed it to the MBTA). I could bike almost anywhere I wanted to go. I was able to attend Museums and pre-Broadway trials. I could even go to the beach though one doesn't think about Boston having beaches. Revere Beach and South Boston were easily available though neither was as good as Nantasket, a bit south of Boston. Revere Beach had an amusement park and it was fun for several of my friends to get together and ride the roller coaster and play arcade games. Life was good. Life was easy. Boston offered us lots.
I went to elementary and junior high school in Brighton but for high school I went to Girls' Latin School in Dorchester. To get there and back I rode the MTA every day. It was a long trip but it never seemed that bad. I was with friends. We studied. We chatted. We were young students looking to the future.
I loved the Children's Museum, the Museum of Science, the Peabody Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in the Fenway. Most of all I couldn't wait to see a Saturday matinee usually with my Mother. I remember "West Side Story". I cried. I remember "The Most Happy Fella", one of my favorites. Over the years I saw dozens at the Shubert or the Orpheum. I rode the swan boats in the Public Garden. I fed the pigeons there too. I went to the circus at the Boston Gardens and I saw ice shows there as well.
Boston was home though I left it forty years ago for California. Almost every year I have returned to visit family and friends. I enjoy the Fall foliage if I go in October. I still go the Gardner Museum and marvel at its beauty. If it's baseball season I see the Red Sox at Fenway Park if I can manage to squeeze in a game. I love the Celtics, the Bruins, and the Patriots. They are my teams.
Boston is a city of ethnic diversity. There is a large section of Asian, Italian, Irish, etc.
I remember watching the pizza makers in the window of "King of Pizza" throwing the dough high in the air and catching it without creating a hole. The best food in Boston is the seafood that is so fresh because the catch of the day comes from Boston Harbor.
How could I not love a city which gave me so much?
It broke my heart to hear of the bombings in my beloved Boston. It tore at my emotions to think that maybe my friends or relatives could have been blown up at the Marathon.
What an awful thought to carry while I am so far away. Thankfully no calls came with sad news for me yet all of the Boston news is sad and rocks my very soul. It happened because some sick minds wanted to destroy what makes Boston beautiful a competition with a long history in a city that is rich with culture.
I pray for the survivors of this disaster and I hope Boston will not be tainted. My longing to go back is very strong. Boston, Beantown, Hometown.