I lived in Boston, Massachusetts for a little over year in the late 1980’s. I moved there to chase dreams only a 20-year old could: love, laughter, life, and a passion for absolutely anything unknown.
Boston introduced this Iowa Boy to people from everywhere on the planet. I befriended a barbershop baritone-comedian born and raised on America’s east coast. I became the best of friends with Geoff (with a “G”) from Kansas City. He taught me the art of Dewar’s, darts and Frank Sinatra. I fell in love with an Irish lesbian who “let me down easy.” And I passionately made love with an actress from Tyler, Texas – for almost a week and a half.
I met a Pakistani couple who made me understand that hearts were not to be toyed with, all while teaching me how to make hummus in a single pan. I ate tapas, I drank thick, dark beer before it was hip. I smoked Pall Mall non-filters, and learned why single-malt whisky (with no “e”) was meant for sipping not slamming.
I learned the art of photography and the true process of imaging silver halide onto paper. I captured souls on the streets of Harvard Square while drinking espresso with pinky-pointing socialites. I wrote poetry and prose that no one but my mother will ever hear. I stood in the shadows of history, from Faneuil Hall to the Old North Church and every step of the Freedom Trail and found the reflection of my own eyes in the lines of Goya, Degas, and Dürer.
I lived in Commonwealth brownstones, Beacon Hill basements, broke-down shanties and the Inman Square subway stop for a solid three days. Albeit for a very short time, Boston was my home. Boston gave me love. Boston gave me laughter. Boston gave me tears. Boston has my heart in every breath I take. Boston taught a boy of 20 years to be a man and live for today.
My heart breaks a little for my Boston home today. But just for a beat, because…
If Boston ever taught this Iowa Boy anything, it was:
NEVER BACK DOWN FROM A FIGHT.
NEVER GIVE UP ON YOUR BROTHERS.
AND NOTHING IS WORSE THAN A SLEW OF SOUTHIES WITH A SCORE TO SETTLE!
(Originally written and posted to my Facebook page on April 14th, 2013)