Monday, August 30, 2010

Shipping up to Boston

The final night in New York began and ended in the downstairs room of the hostel with varied degrees of sensibility. Sensible that we didn’t end up going out to bars, irresponsible that we gathered a small group to drink with downstairs.

There was an English girl, with a typically British smile but an unbelievably smoking body. She bought a dress for $2.50 from an opshop that had only one sleeve and looked like something out of Star Trek. When she left for bed I jokingly mentioned that maybe next time she can afford the rest of her dress, but it came out as more of an insult than witty charm. Facepalm.

The night was punctuated throughout with trips to the deli across the street for $2 beers. I tried a different one every time, opting for two different pumpkin ales at various points. They were odd choices, but somewhat delicious, one tasting like cinnamon, the other like...pumpkin.

The next morning required an early wake up, pack up and feed. We had to grab all of our bags, walk to the subway, get through the gates, change trains and finally get to the bus stop. The A train didn’t arrive, so we were left in a momentary limbo until we jumped on another to Penn Station. From there we were able to grab our Megabus and head through New York on our way to Boston.
Boston, like Brooklyn, but clean.

The bus went through the Upper West Side, leaving a poor feeling in my wallet. Next up was Harlem, where the feeling greatly subsided. Finally, we saw where Manhattan ends and where The Bronx begins, detouring past the new Yankee Stadium.
Brilliant idea.

The freeways continued as we went past Hartford, Connecticut before getting into Boston four hours after the original departure. Once into the hostel, Michael and I went for a walk through Boston Common's outser streets so that Michael could sort out his new iPhone. The iPhone is an amazing piece of technology and has the ability to make people ignore one another and the outside world. Michael is able to hold up a two-way conversation on his own, so the combination of the two should form some happy balance.
80's Bob

We continued past one of the city’s trendier areas and I stopped to grab a pair of shoes. It had been a year since I bought some new ones and the current pair had become holier than a nun. They had served me well, but the blisters and holes became too much.
To old friends, may your soles live forever in Dog's kingdom.

Boston itself seems to be a great place. I only stayed for one night as I figured I would be able to spend weekends there given its proximity to my university. The streets are pretty, there are a lot of young and intelligent people and the place is mad for sports. Choosing to spend the best part of a year living close to it was instantly gratified on arrival.

Today is the first day of school. Michael and I are on the bus to Amherst, via Springfield, to begin the orientation process. First and foremost I have to sort out my visa, as it would be devastating to leave at this stage. Secondly, I can’t wait to head back to class. Being a mature age student whose marks were too poor to initially get into university has left me with a different perspective. I love what I study and the work is rarely boring or cumbersome. More than anything I’m grateful that it has afforded me the opportunity to travel which is an education in its own right.

I’m not entirely convinced I’m ready to settle into one spot for an extended period of time right now. It’s only been 3 weeks since I arrived and spending my days on buses/trains and shitty bunk beds has yet to wear thin. That said, I am beginning to cultivate a pot belly. The more weight I put on, the more my wallet loses. Regardless, it will be nice to unpack and remember that even if I’m not moving about, I’m still thousands of miles from home, and that in itself is the next best thing.

NB: I wrote this on the bus a few hours ago before the net died.

***Song: The Dropkick Murphys - Walk Away
One of Boston's finest bands take on marriage. Yeehaa

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