Home > Uncategorized > To Boston. Love, Me.

To Boston. Love, Me.

Dear Boston,

This is my letter to you, after living here for four months. To most people it’s not that long, but for me, it was the longest I’d ever been away from home.

I came to you with few expectations. What I wanted most was to change and experience new things. I did that.

I let myself be swallowed by your crowds: the endless tourists, the harried business-people, the high society and the homeless. I immersed myself in the artists and hipsters, the dreamers and the doers, the lovers and the fighters, the academics and the bums. I loved how you are filled different opinions from all corners of the city. Opinions that have to be shouted to be heard.

Boston, I loved you from the moment I stepped off the plane. Your bitter winds and cold people didn’t scare me too badly. I was ready for whatever you threw at me, and boy, did you have some alternately nasty and amazing tricks up your sleeve. I can honestly say I went through my highest highs and lowest lows while in your city.

But you showed me that I’m stronger than I thought possible. In the depth of my fright I wanted nothing more than to run home to Mom and Dad and safety, but simply being here made that impossible. For the first time in my life you forced me to rely completely on myself. You reinforced my belief that I had to get away from what I knew in order to find myself and love me.

You challenged me, Boston. You showed me when I should be wary and when I should show compassion. You let me befriend a homeless man. You made me try new things. I danced in a seedy jazz club in New York City. I ate sushi. I walked and explored every inch of you, Boston. I danced without caring and played and laughed and cried. I listened to new music and went to art shows. I worked jobs I’d never before considered. I tried yoga and stopped being afraid to go places by myself.

You broke my heart and then fixed it for me, Boston. You made me fall apart, but then you put me back together for the better. I found qualities I never knew I had. I learned the satisfaction of working hard at a job and how good an honest day’s work feels. 

You charmed me. Boston, you may not have the speed and pace that New York has, but God, you have your perks. New York is dull and rushed and dirty, but you shine. You have clean sidewalks, the Red Sox, and all types of people. No place compares to you and the way that you sparkle on a sunny day. There is history woven into every fiber of this city. And pride. Oh, Boston, you have your pride.

You gave me places to go to when I needed comfort. I fell in love with you here.

 

I contemplated life here.

 

I enjoyed my lunch breaks on sunny days here.

 

Boston, you gave me something to strive for when I had no idea what I wanted to do after graduation.

At my job you gave me people to talk to and learn from. The best part about my job was recognizing people on a daily basis, people who fascinated me and broke my heart. There was Steve, the man who brought me coffee each and every morning–even though he was homeless and had probably 20 bucks to his name. There was the Latino hairdresser who worked on Newbury Street, and even though she is what we would call “fabulous,” she always went out of her way to compliment me on the hard work I put into that display. There was the sweet, soft-spoken gay man who came by each week to buy pansies for his flower boxes and always wished me a good day. You gave me new friends who enriched my life and challenged me and forced me out of my shell.

You let me be the girl who stood out and shone to those back home—something I’d never felt before. You let others believe in me and encourage me when I had trouble believing in myself.

You let me be me, Boston. You held no expectations of me. You just asked that I tried to be myself. That was enough for you. 

You showed me that happiness truly is a choice. My mom had always said it, but I thought once I got to a new place happiness would be easy. No. It’s definitely a choice. Thank you also for showing me that happiness is less about place, and more about the people with whom I choose to surround myself.

Thank you for saving me. When I came to your city I was a shy girl who apologized incessantly for existing. You showed me it’s OK to be in the way at times. You taught me to be bold and be noticed.

You took me in and let me stay awhile, filling me up with new sights, sounds, smells, people and experiences.

People fall in love, but in the last four months, I fell in love with you. As much as I wished otherwise there was no room in my heart for anyone or anything but you and learning your intricacies. I knew this experience would change my life, but I didn’t realize that so much of the change would be internal.

I didn’t know how long this experience would last, but I knew I was ready to stick it out, as long as I needed to. And now, it’s time to move on. Though I hope it does, Boston, life may not bring me back to you. But because of you, I’m not afraid of where I end up. I pray I continue the changes you began. 

 So, Boston, I’ll see you later. Thanks for the memories. I’m on to better things.

Love,

Me.

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  1. May 11, 2010 at 9:26 am

    I’m a little sad for you Katie… I know how much you love’d it in Boston and I must say after seeing the photos (I liked building reflecting the clouds the best) I can see why you want to go back.

    Perhaps a vacation is in order to re-taste the beauty and boldness this city has to offer.

    Never think of yourself as being in the way… Because it is a privilege to be in your presence. If anything, you taught them a few long needed manners.

  2. Shannon
    May 11, 2010 at 10:20 am

    I am sad that I won’t get to share an experience in Boston with you. I am happy you learned so much about yourself. You have always been strong and smart but I’m glad you see those qualities and more in yourself. Good luck in your next step.

  3. Rob
    May 11, 2010 at 10:44 am

    Well said Katie. I am sure Boston will miss your southern hospitality. As you move on to bigger and better things in life, Boston will always be here, and Boston will never change. So whenever you need to revitalize those memories, take a look back at all the pictures of our walks around the city; as those same images will always be here, waiting to welcome you back with open arms.

  4. May 11, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    Pardon me while I move to Boston now :).

    This was a wonderful post. It’s amazing that any place could have such an effect on people, but I absolutely think there is rhyme and reason to it. There are just those places that bring us to life. I’m so happy you’ve found yours, if only for a little while.

  1. September 12, 2010 at 3:31 pm

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