I'm here for my sister's birthday. The party was last night and the beer flowed, the paper plates buckled under pulled pork, chicken and the trimmings and I bumped into folks I'd not seen in a quarter century. My three siblings and I were under the same roof for the first time in 5 years and it was good. I hold my breath at these things, conditioned to expect disaster, the one-too-many rant, the fractious calamity of exposition and tears. I guess I'm a touch of a pessimist. Disaster never came. There were hugs and laughs and dire attempts at compressing five years of life into the confines of a party conversation. The general idea is passed along but it's vague; abstract. If you're lucky, it gets close to impressionism. The room filled with happy party noises and an all-70's soundtrack. Jetlag combined with age (I'm a year older too, as of a week or so ago) led to good behaviour on my part. That said, it was still a slow start this morning.
Boston is a cocktail of eating, walking, drinking and remembering. I munch lobster rolls and oysters, slurping clam chowder, Harpoon IPA and Sam Adams. I trip along the uneven sidewalks in a daze, the oft-beaten streets of my younger days showing the passage of time or obscuring it, convincing me that nothing's changed. I sometimes wander past one of my old playgrounds, feeling that stabbing pang of lost youth. I breathe deep and cherish it.