Two weeks ago I packed up my Honda Pilot, Amelia, with most of my clothes, shoes, and pertinent belongings and started my trek to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
On my way out the door I cried dramatically, dropped the little terra cotta water-catcher dish from under my aloe plant on the steps where it shattered. I barely paused before Christine said, “Just go. It’s fine! It’s fine!” for which I later apologized profusely. I promise I’m a better plant parent. For now my aloe plant is hanging out with other plant friends in the care of my dear friend, Donna.
But, you’re not here for my plant.
My drive from my little Rome home to the big city of Boston took about nineteen hours of actual driving over the course of three days. My Berry College/Connect Rome family came in clutch the whole way up: I stopped in North Carolina on Friday night to stay with the Pachecos. Our vivacious Friday night included dinner, Netflix, and tons of overdue conversations. (and Gus made me delicious coffee Saturday morning!) I don’t see them often and welcomed the chance to just sit with them for a while. On Saturday night I stopped in Pennsylvania with the Roberts family. We went to a church potluck, visited black angus cows, watched fireworks from the porch, and drank coffee in church (like true Christians) on Sunday morning.
I was Rory Gilmore circa A Year In The Life — bouncing from couch to couch (minus Logan’s bed) visiting some of my favorite humans.
*Side note about these two families if you haven’t known me for ten years. First, Julie, Jeannene, Gus, and I are BC alum. Josh & Julie started a church in Rome my freshman year. In a bar. J, Gus, and I went to church there for many, many years alongside oodles of our other favorite people. I served on staff in a million different capacities, wrestled with my salvation, heard God call me abroad, and heard Him call me home all right in that little community. In terms of faith, I feel like my time at Connect taught me to walk. Those years were rich, rich, rich. So it was basically no question for me to stop on my way north to stay with these two families. They welcomed me with the widest open arms like no time had passed. I am #blessed to have such lifelong friends!
On my drive I learned the following things:
- I will not stop for road trip meals unless they involve Chickfila. I have no idea why.
- Southern Virginia is a beautiful drive through the greenest trees!
- However, NoVa has the worst traffic ever and I never want to drive there again.
- Pennsylvania is just as gorgeous as I remember… but it’s also cold and I didn’t pack sweatshirts. Naturally Julie, a true southerner, had a spare.
Since my arrival in Boston, I’ve done a little bit of exploring here and there: finding new restaurants, coffee, and some cultural fun. I’m disappointed to announce that Boston runs on Dunkin Donuts. There’s one on every other street corner and I’m not a fan, but it’s fine. Bostonians like their conversation blunt and their overly sweet coffee makes up for it, I suppose.
I spent my first Friday evening at Tanglewood in the City – Boston Symphony Orchestra’s live streamed performace right on the lawn of Boston Common. It felt like fall with 70 degree temps and everyone outside sans humidity. I’ve been super impressed by Boston’s vast greenery. Being a big city, I expected paradise to be paved for parking lots, but Boston’s done a pretty great job preserving beautiful evergreens and nature areas throughout the city. It feels a little less like a strange place and a little more like home with trees all around. I’ve been told autumn in New England can’t be beat. We’ll see!
The following Saturday I visited a beach north of Boston, stayed a little too long in the sun, and stopped in a few local shops on my way home (and a few Targets and REI because I saw them and I knew them and it was great). There are so many landmarks and experiences on my to do list that keeps growing daily. I’m sure I will be busy for the next six months just trying to take it all in.
These days I feel a lot like Rory Gilmore because I wear heels everyday and help create ideas and processes that make work life more efficient and more enjoyable for a lot of people. Work is challenging, but full of opportunities to learn about people, systems, processes, and so much more. It’s a great big puzzle!
I’m still super hesitant to parallel park Amelia on the tiny potholed streets of Boston proper and sometimes I get lost on my way to Target. Living in a hotel (especially one without a microwave – I lament not being able to make popcorn on the daily. Surely the Lord hears me) doesn’t suit this heart full of home, but it’s nice having someone else make the bed for a change. I don’t hate this city, not one bit.
P.S. It would be too cool to find Sherry & Christopher & GiGi’s apartment, but only if I get to avoid the baby shower. (Obviously on my list is a trip to Connecticut for all things Gilmore.)
*for even more detailed accounts of my New England life, find me on Facebook and Instagram: @littlelionbeth