A Whole New/Old World
I've been avoiding writing this blog post. That's right - avoiding. Oh, I've had plenty of time and plenty to write about. In fact, I've written about five blog posts in my head in the past two weeks.
|The Goodbye Beer|
|Our last visit to the Public Garden.|
I was never so grateful for sunglasses and a mask.
Cried the whole time.
Reader, I left Boston. There it is. Just writing the words down brings tears to my eyes. Boston has been my home, with a little off and on, for the past 15 years. It is where I became an adult. It is where I found and lost love. It is where I lived a dream come true as a roommate with my sister. It is where I moved in with my life partner and it is where I began to raise my child. I said goodbye to my dear companion, Nikolas James Pumpkinhead in Boston. I grew as a teacher, teaching for the longest stretch of my life, in Boston. In Boston, a former student worked with me as an intern and another as a colleague. It's where I first started to put some roots in the ground once and for all.
|My first visit to Boston. Summer 2002.|
This is in Louisburg Square in Beacon Hill.
I said, as I sat on this stoop, "Someday I will live here."
I ran up this hill many times during my years in Boston.
|Looking toward the future? |
Someday, Public Garden, I will love you so hard.
Covid has taken a lot from a lot of people - family members, jobs, homes. With the killing of George Floyd in May, we have also seen that the work to create a better America for Black Americans is vital and well over due. There has been a lot of loss in 2020. I avoided putting my own grief down in writing because it seemed both trivial and overwhelming. Today I am showing up so I can celebrate the gains, honor Boston, and finally be able to write about books again.
In late May, after a few weeks of trying to find a summer cabin near my parents in Western NY, my sister found a home in Buffalo, NY. "If I were moving to Buffalo, I would buy this house in this neighborhood," she told me. Scrolling through pictures I couldn't believe what a beautiful home it was. While the SO and I had talked of eventually moving back to Buffalo, it wasn't something on the table and definitely not in the middle of a global pandemic. If nothing else, leaving a job for the unknown was a pretty solid reason. There was also the loss of living a short drive from my best friend, my sister.
I showed my SO and even though the house was less (edit: I originally said more. Ha. No. homes in Boston are more than double the cost of our home.) than half the cost of a similar home in Boston, he chuckled and said, "Yeah, that's not what we're looking for." The next morning I woke up and he was already up, scrolling through his phone.
"I had an idea," he said. "What if we bought that house and moved to Buffalo?"
A few weeks later, our offer was accepted and on the last day of school it was official - we were moving. I had to scramble to say goodbye to my school, my friends, my students and their families. Because of Covid it meant that I missed a lot of people and it felt like I was ghosting on a whole city. By the end of July we were packed up with two cats, one toddler, a moving truck, and a full Jeep heading back to the part of the world I left when I was 18.
|My moving buddy.|
|It is oozing charm and details.|
Pocket doors, stained glass...all the good stuff.
|I am a home owner. #adultinghard|
The house, which we bought sight-unseen, is amazing and all of us, including the cats, are enjoying the extra space to stretch out. We are no longer all working and living within a tiny space and that feels luxurious. In fact, a week ago I was ready to write this post and tell all. Then the first day back to school happened. For the first time in 15 years, I am an unemployed teacher. Last week, picture memories on my phone started popping up with images of classroom set ups, first day smiles, and lots and lots of kids. It hit me hard. I thought I was ready to take a break from teaching. After teaching through Covid I felt a little burnt out. When the memories faced me every morning, I wasn't so sure.
Here I am, a week into back to school life. I am teaching my toddler how to use the bathroom - a kind of teaching that requires a lot more patience than I knew I had. We're creating a home and reconnecting with family who we only saw through visits. The hardest part is not being able to see my sister every week and that is something that will take, well, the rest of my life to work on. But we're working on it. We're learning to become Buffa-lovers. It is kind of a bummer that there is this whole global pandemic thing because Buffalo has some pretty amazing things going on here that we can't really experience yet. Someday soon we may be able to get out there again! A new adventure awaits...something that is definitely right up my alley.
There you have it. The big news. I'm ready to tell you about some amazing books now. Stay tuned!
|Our house has a sleeping porch.|
It's my favorite room so far.
|This house in our neighborhood |
has a string quartet that does
|MAP (Massachusetts Ave Project) honey|
One of our favorite local organizations.
|Yard work! Small but mighty. |
(The yard and the child and the lawn mower.)
|New library, new cards.|
|Couldn't believe this amazing exhibit!|
|It's not the Public Garden, but we are a couple of |
blocks from the Buffalo Zoo. Sometimes we go in pjs. :)