Moving West and The Meaning of "Everything"

Posted on November 14,2012 by hmonkmspp

As I mentioned before, I am from a rural area in Upstate NY. I grew up with trees and grass and cows and farms. When I was in high school, I hated living in the middle of nowhere, and complained that there was never anything to do. We were so far from everything.

Now, living in a population-dense neighborhood in the southwest area of the city of Boston, I would do anything to get away. I miss the quiet and fresh air and crickets and stars. As I apply to practicum sites for next year, I have started thinking about moving a little bit farther out of the city, to be a little closer to nature. When I told my boyfriend that I wanted to live in a town like Norwood, he looked shocked and asked, "why would you want to live there? It's so far from everything."

Well, I guess that really depends on your definition of "everything." To me, my everything in Boston has become school, practicum, peers, my boyfriend, happiness, and virtual connections to friends and family. Well, if school and practicum and peers are west of the city, and my now-virtual friends are where my computer and phone are, and I am happiest when surrounded by nature instead of people, I think my "everything" is perfectly OK being west. Now I just have to convince my boyfriend.

Don't get me wrong, Boston is an amazing city. There are so many people and restaurants and bars and events and great public transportation and history. Luckily for me, there are also so many opportunities to see a little bit of green (or brown and orange since it's fall now). Below are some of the wonderful nature excursions I've been on since moving to Boston, and they are all within a half-hour drive of the city:

Jamaica Pond in Jamaica Plain

Elm Bank in Wellesley

Blue Hills Reservation in Milton, MA

Boston Public Gardens

The Boston Harbor

Naonet Woodlands in Dover, MA

Chestnut Hill Reservoir near Boston College

Great Blue Hill ski trails in Canton, MA

Park in front of Stony Brook Station in Jamaica Plain

The Arnold Arborteum in Jamaica Plain/Roslindale

I guess where I'm living isn't so far from my definition of "everything" after all...