As I sit in a rental car and gaze upon Boston’s coastline, I admire the breathtaking Atlantic Ocean that is almost as serene and blue as the clear sky above it. On the other side of the road, I see trees and buildings, some been built over 100 years ago, some modern. This city is an enormous contrast to the Midwestern environment in which I live, but it feels so familiar just the same. This is because although I have lived most of my life in suburban Chicago, I was born in Boston. Moreover, even though I am 1,000 miles away from my house, I feel at home.
After a drive around the city, my family and I visit our old neighbors, who have allowed us to stay with them for the week. We talk, laugh, and play games, enjoying every minute together. For the first time in many years, I am able to see my old neighborhood, my old friends, and my old house. Later, as I walk up the street, memories of living here rush through my mind. I did not think I would recall so much because I moved away just before my fifth birthday. I am amazed at how everything I see seems to jog my memory. Finally, I get to my old house. It seems smaller than I remember. It is a narrow, light blue, two-story, wood-frame house with a small yard that slopes toward it. Unfortunately, we did not get to see the inside, but I can visualize every detail from memories and home videos.
This trip also appeals to the baseball fan in me, as we manage to get tickets to storied Fenway Park. Coincidentally, on this particular evening, the Red Sox play against my hometown Chicago White Sox. Before we leave for the game, I make the bold decision to wear my White Sox cap inside the domain of some of the most passionate fans of any sports team in the world. Fortunately, no one heckles me. From the moment we arrive at the field, I am completely in awe of the entire atmosphere. The fans are very excited, and the ballpark is filled to capacity. Everything about Fenway Park seems to be a tribute to baseball history. All around I see tributes to legendary former baseball players such as Cy Young, Ted Williams, and Carl Yastrzemski. The concourse and seating appear unchanged from how they were when the stadium was built over 100 years ago. The scoreboard in left field is still hand operated. It is as if I have stepped back in time.
After a week, it is time to leave. I have loved every minute of this trip, reaching out to my own past, as well as the past of my favorite sport. But now it is time to go from one home to another.
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