The past week has been overwhelming in quite a few ways, to say the least.
Thursday I had plans to have dinner with my friend T, who I haven’t seen since before Christmas. We see each other every month to two months depending on our schedules, but time had gotten away from us lately, which meant we had a ton of things to catch up on. I had volunteered to drive to where he lives, which meant I was headed into Cambridge. I was a little nervous about driving into the city that night because that was the day that Boston held its inter-faith service for the victims of the bombing, and the president was also in town for the event. I thought there might be some crazy traffic, but the drive in wasn’t as bad as I had though (side note – I live about 15 miles outside the city).
We had a great time, and ended up eating at this great Mexican restaurant called Ole, and then wandered around the city before I decided to call it a night and come home. When I got back to the apartment around 11, D and I watched two episodes of a TV show on DVD, then headed to bed.
When I awoke on Friday morning, I quickly discovered that something very odd was going on. One of the first things I do in the morning after opening my eyes, is pick up my phone and check facebook. Here were some of the posts I was seeing from my friends:
– what is happening in Boston/Cambridge/Watertown right now?? BE SAFE
– There are bombs and soldiers in the streets and thousands of people locked up in their homes scared to come out or worse, scared of the evil that might be coming in
– 5 towns on lockdown. No public transportation.
– There is a Shelter-In-Place order for All of Boston, so please stay in your homes.
Then I turned on the TV and got the whole story. Apparently, as I’m sure you all know now after hearing the news, there had been a huge gun fight between the suspects and police the night before, much of which took place in Cambridge, just MINUTES after I had left the city. The governor had ordered everyone to stay inside in about 7 or 8 different cities in and around Boston and the live footage they were showing on TV looked like that of a war zone. Since both D and I do not live directly in the locked down cities, we both still had to go to work, though my work did send around an email telling everyone who lived in those areas to obey the order and stay home.
I was glued to the TV up until the time I had to leave for work and at that point, they were showing swat teams swarming around a house in Watertown with huge guns.
While at work, I got calls and facebook messages from many friends making sure I was okay.
I tried my best to focus at work, but as you can imagine, it was not the most productive day. I kept wishing I was at home watching the live coverage, but as a consolation, I kept open the live feed on boston.com and was able to stay up to date that way.
I’ve never experienced anything like what happened in Boston on Friday (and I was in NYC on 9/11, though that was a very different type of situation). I’m lucky that I don’t live directly in the areas affected, but it was surreal to witness something like this going on in my home town.
Thankfully, we know the end of this story. They caught the second suspect at the end of the night and the city celebrated. We can all be thankful for that! I was glued to the TV until the end, and it’s heartwarming now to see all of the people dedicating sports events and other celebrations to the victims and policemen.
Hopefully after all this, we can resume normalcy this coming week.
Anyone else out there reading live in/around Boston? What was your experience like on Friday?