The countdown is on and I’m just about ready to be done. I’ve got the urge to pack up my classroom, and start anew but I’ve got 19 more days in which to finish well. I’m struggling to write my newsletters, lamenting through my lesson plans, and resisting, with every bone in my body, the urge to just take the kids, and go outside. It is beautiful in Boston these days, and I feel like a fourth grader, a little bit cooped up, and ready to begin my summer vacation. Even so, it’s been a good year, and I am looking for ways to make these last days exciting and enjoyable for my kids. Seems like the eight different special events we’ve got planned between now and then ought to do the trick!
Maybe I was spoiled last week, but it’s cold in the city of Boston today! For the last three days it’s felt like fall, complete with raw, cold, rainy days.
Still with 27 days left of school, I know that summer is really just around the corner. Long days, long nights, warm temperatures and months of sea, sun, and salt await. All I have to do is get there…
I know it’s a corny title, but I was laying on the floor of my bedroom today, trying to work out the kinks in my back when that thought hit me. I was looking up at the ceiling which reflected that afternoon (now evening) sun that I have grown to love so much, and as I tend to do come springtime, I was pondering an eventual move.
I didn’t move much growing up. I lived in the dormitories at Tufts with my resident director parents for the first three and a half years of my life, and while we did move between dorms, I don’t remember much of it. In August of 1986 however, we took off up Route 93, and my parents settled our little family in Londonderry, NH into the same house in which my parents still live. After college however, my life has been a different story.
As I approach my five year reunion, I am realizing how much I have failed to put down roots. How much constant upheaval has become a part of the rhythm of my life. How much I’ve grown to like it. I have been out of college for five years. Counting my sublet in the summer of 2005, I’ve lived in 5 different apartments since then. Somerville #1 (Powderhouse Square), Brighton, Somerville #2 (Inman Square), Somerville #3 (Porter/Davis Square), Somerville #4 (.1 mile from Somerville apartment #3).
Maybe I should stop moving, realize that there is no “perfect” place, or “perfect” set of circumstances, but then again, I think that moving so much has taught me some valuable lessons.
- I keep less stuff, and I use the library. I love books, and I keep the ones I really love, but books are heavy. Almost everything I own serves a purpose, and while I STILL have a lot of stuff, this is a big step for a childhood pack-rat (hello, high school French notes still living in my closet after my college graduation….)
- When my boxes are packed properly, I can unpack a bedroom in a matter of hours. Seriously. This summer I moved into my apartment at 9:00, returned a rental truck all the way to Portsmouth, NH and drove back by 3:00, and had my bedroom completely unpacked by 6:00. Even I was impressed.
- I no longer get super attached to the places in which I live.
- I can pack boxes like it’s my job. I could probably make it my job and make some good money off of it.
- I can make almost any space feel like a home.
- I can maximize space with the best of ’em.
Anyway, as I contemplate those big life changes that seem to creep my way, or at least into my consciousness every spring, it’s nice to know that home really is where the heart is.
I spent a lovely day outside today, enjoying the perfect weather (albeit a little too hot) and escaping from the drudgery of city life. It was a re-creation of my winter time retreat- out to Walden Pond for the afternoon, and then into Concord to Main Street Market and Cafe for some lunch and ice cream. I realized that even though I’ve been to Walden Pond a number of times on surprise sunny days in the winter, I’ve never made it for spring or summer. It was a perfectly delightful day, though I wished I’d had a friend to join me.
I got back to the city to discover that we’re under a water ban during which we must boil all water that is to enter our mouths. That’s right, even the water with which I brush my teeth. I’m grateful that I have a little bit of bottled water left, and I intend to pick some more up when I go grocery shopping tomorrow (that is, if there’s any left). It’s funny because I was just thinking this morning about how wasteful bottled water is… but it sure is handy for times like this!
I continue to struggle with the decision to stay or leave the city. I love my time outside of the city. Sitting in Concord, I could imagine my life there in Small Town, USA. I love the image of living in a small house, surrounded by woods, a place where I can see the stars, and hear something other than cars passing on the road.
Growing up in NH, I would wake on summer mornings to the sound of the morning dove gently cooing and fall asleep on summer evenings to the sound of crickets in the stream across the street. More and more, I find that I miss that, the connection to nature, to a world bigger than that which we have created.
I love the city too. I love the history that lines Boston’s streets and the diversity of people and of perspectives that surround me. I love being able to sit in a cafe and watch people live their lives in a way that isn’t quite as true in a small town just because there aren’t as many people around. I love the anonymity of the city, how you can blend into your surroundings if that’s what you want.
I wish I could have the best of both worlds.