Tuesday, May 12, 2009

My Weekend in Boston

Though rain had been predicted, instead it was one of those perfect, soft May weekends, with Cherry trees, tulips and every other spring-thing in bloom. I got loads of city energy from so much people-watching and from seeing the buildings of my childhood. I also managed to appreciate the subway all day Friday, and then to be off of it before there was a serious wreck on it that evening.

Boston is so pretty.I took the subway from Logan airport to Boylston Street, near where my mother's ballet school used to be, and then walked to the Public Gardens. I saw the Swan Boats, the Frog Pond and the statues that had been part of my childhood from the time I was seven.

I ate at a cafe on Newbury Street. It was one I'd been to before, but with another name (both mine and that of the cafe).

Walking to the Boston Public Library, I saw that the building where we'd performed when I was with Boston Childrens Theater had now become an H&M clothing store.

In the middle of the giant Boston Public Library is a courtyard, with tables and a fountain. It feels like an Italian Piazza, without the good coffee and loud voices. I sat here for a while.
The sun moved in and highlighted the girl to the right of the fountain, and I thought of my childhood friend Ruth, and how we had shared a love of books, of writing and of our own unique whackiness, at Park School, at the library and at (what was then) Newbury Street's Harvard Bookstore Cafe. This girl looked so much like her.
Ruth couldn't make it to the reunion.

But, it was so great to stay with my first best friend - Sally Solomon - and to see so many others.

See how giddy I am? See what the old friends are thinking? "Barbara" really needs to get out of the boondocks more often...We all immediately slipped right back in synch., connecting as easily as we had back then. They all now know about unschooling. I learned a lot too. They remember lots of fantastic stories, even ones about my childhood home and family, that I had forgotten! I'm blaming it on moving around so much and not getting back in touch sooner. Or, I just live in the moment too effectively. Yeah, that's it.

It's nice to think that these memories were stored with old friends. Maybe I'll be able to hang on to a few of them now. Periodically, I'll have to record some here.There were other highlights :

- Going alone to a Coolidge Corner art house movie theater (where the popcorn was organic and the butter was real!) to see a film, "Every Little Step" about the making of A Chorus Line (a show that my mother and I loved and trudged through the blizzard of '78 snow to see).

- Sharing a Turkish brunch and deep conversation with my stepfather.

- Browsing through a great independent bookstore for an hour and then buying a book I've been waiting to find for months, that was now available in paperback - Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri.

This next one really needs it's own post. Remember the picture (you three regular readers ;) that I posted of myself in this post? The fireplace remains the same but everything else has evolved.
To be continued.


kelli said...

Sounds like a great weekend :)

I love the picture of you in front of the fireplace, both of them; how much we both change and don't change through the years huh?

mamak said...

What an awesome trip! I bet you feel refreshed. Gotta love old friends and going back home!

mindy said...

I love seeing Boston through your eyes. Absolutely stunning. And that picture in front of the mantle....you're just beautiful.

Sara said...

It was a beautiful weekend for a homecoming! Glad it didn't rain on you (or us). Looks like you had an amazing time. And funny, I'm reading Unaccustomed Earth right now. Short stories are about all my attention span can handle!

Danielle said...

Wow, sounds like an amazing time. But somehow I just feel sure that Maryland is right on the way to Boston even if you did fly. ;)

Madeline said...

Sara, isn't it good? I am loving it. I thought about contacting you but knew that you are crazy busy with the end of school, right? I'd lost your blog til this comment. It was bookmarked on my old laptop that died a few months ago. I'm glad I'll have it back!

Dina said...

Hey, make that FOUR readers....