Hi Everyone. Our delightful stretch of weather is coming to an end....cold front is expected tonight, and temps will be back to more “normal” levels overnight tonight. While I could
write about the weather, and how alarming it is to see things budding and opening at this stage of the game, we’re not going there today.
We’re all familiar with Aesop’s fable of the City Mouse and the Country Mouse
. Neither visit ended well for our furry friends. This past week, working in the city, I’ve been pondering whether I’d have to call myself a City Trisec or a Country Trisec.
I was born a city boy at Boston’s University Hospital (now a part of Boston Medical Center). I spent my first year downtown in a small apartment near Egleston Square (Roxbury).
But then Pops bought a house in the bedroom community of Saugus, and instantly I got a yard, open fields to play in within a five-minute walk (alas, since developed), grandma’s house and her big hill a five minute drive away, and Breakheart Reservation
another 5 minutes past that. (I soon also had a baby brother and a dog, but I’d suppose that’s a blog for another day)
And so began what I surmise is the country phase of your loyal TriSec. (Hey, I live in the megalopolis, this is all relative). Joining Scouts rather sealed that deal...I consider myself most ‘at home’ in the woods. I can build shelter, stay warm, and even forage reasonably well, and some of the things I’ve seen and done while in a Scout uniform are experiences that I would trade for no other.
I’ve said it before; my favorite place on Earth is the South Shore of Nova Scotia
, and I consider Halifax to be my second city....I doubt that I’d have ever had reason or desire to visit if not for the serendipitous connections through that “country” phase that is so elemental to Scouting.
Ah, but then another thing happened. Like most American males, I somehow managed to not scare off a member of the fairer sex, and after some time we decided we liked each other enough to do that life partner thing, and you guessed it....I moved back to the city. Mrs. TriSec is also a product of the City of Boston, but she grew up on the west side in “Mittville”, or what most people call Belmont.
Despite the ideas you might have of vast amounts of green space dotted by stately old mansions, Belmont is actually a suburb of Cambridge, and it’s maximally developed. Other than a few small parks, it’s entirely urban, and in fact you can get to downtown Boston from anywhere in Belmont in under a half hour via public transportation.
Waltham is a little better in that regard...with enormous tracts preserved from development thanks to some visionary city leaders. We’ve got Beaver Brook
(the oldest MDC park in the Commonwealth), Prospect Hill, bike trails, and vast stretches of Rock Meadow there for the visitation. We’ve even got things like turkeys, deer, and coyotes all here in city limits. It might be the City of Waltham, but given the local access to the greenery, it’s a fair compromise.
But now a curious thing has happened....I’m working downtown again. To be sure, it’s not Boston, but our Commonwealth’s second city at Worcester. It is indeed a “city”...there’s noise and traffic and trains and construction and that kind of city planning that’s unique to old Eastern cities. (Colonial relic, 19th Century brick, glass tower
) But within 5 minutes of my office, there’s literally dozens of restaurants, the local Scout Council office
, 4 concert halls, the library, Worcester City hall
, and a Congressman’s office. (Jim McGovern, D-MA)
The local NPR station
is currently sponsoring a “brown bag” jazz series of free lunchtime concerts at the majestic Mechanic’s Hall
that’s at the bottom of the hill from the office. I’ve not missed one of these, and it’s certainly the best perk so far of working in this city.
But the commute is killer - even though I’m reverse-commuting, 80 miles a day roundtrip is no picnic. I’ve done it before with a roundtripper of 50 miles that I did for three years, but it gets to you after a while.
I’m already considering moving the family TriSec away from the ocean and towards the hills of Central Massachusetts
....which is rather clearly the country in these parts.
So I guess the matter is unresolved...City TriSec or country Trisec? Time will tell.