Monday, July 30, 2007

New England Reminders

I've lived in Boston for, oh, 9 years now this summer. And I still feel like a brand new resident. That's a good thing in some ways -- I feel like there is still so much I have not seen or done here, being at most two-three hours away from anything from ocean to mountains to NYC to Canada to just an incredible amount of beauty and culture. But I'm also still considered a newbie by all these locals. There is even a name for us, barnies, which is short for barnacles, those who cling onto something but aren't really a part of that place. Well, nonetheless, I can't deny that somehow New England has become home, despite my own wanderlust and despite any New Englanders' aversion to outsiders.

One of the biggest reminders of where I am is the Boston accent. I actually kinda like it. A lot of people think it's horrific. But as a girl growing up in Pittsburgh (with its own accent), when I heard people from New England speak, it seemed so terribly sophisticated and exotic. Especially because most of the New Englanders I heard speak were very intruiguing, cute boys from Worcester on whom I had crushes. It's kinda funny now when I go to Worcester, but I still have a soft spot for the accent. Although I don't try to imitate it because then everyone from here makes fun of you for not getting it right.

The other thing that reminds you unfailingly of your new geography is this occasional whiff of the sea. I only actually encounter the ocean maybe once a week or even less frequently. But sometimes the sea air is unmistakeable, rolling in from the east and enveloping you in cool saltiness.

And then you see lighthouses, and you also know exactly where you are. This one above is near Duxbury Beach and is R's favorite place in the whole wide world.

Oh and don't get me started on canned brown bread. I have to explain it to people who are visiting my workplace all the time because it is frequently donated and how am I supposed to explain bread in a can? Half the people from this area can't explain it. I've tried it. It isn't terrible. That's not exactly high praise, but it really isn't too bad.

So, here I am. New England still. Looks like I'll be around for a while longer too. Who woulda thunk it.

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