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.

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