Monday, April 15, 2013

A rollercoaster of a day

I was planning on blogging about the Pulitzer Prize announcement today.  I was jubilant earlier on hearing the news that Adam Johnson won for his wonderful novel, The Orphan Master's Son.  I was so happy, in fact, that I called my best friend Jon to share the news.  He was equally delighted.

And then Jon reminded me that it was Marathon Day.  Jon and I are both former Bostonians.  In fact,
that's where our friendship began twenty-some years ago.  I said, "Oh, Marathon Day!  That was my favorite day of the year in Boston.  It was such a great day for community.  I loved all the runners with their little silver blankets.  I hope it's a nice day today."  I was refering to the weather.

Five minutes later, I called Jon back about something trivial.  Before I said a word, he told me about the two explosions.  We quickly got off the phone, and I've been glued to the news ever since.  I feel ill.  All this news footage is my old neighborhood.  I know the area so intimately.  I lived one block from the marathon's finish line.  Twenty years ago today, I was sitting on my fire escape watching the runners come in.  If I were there today, I'd have felt the bomb blast.

I don't get back to Boston as often as I'd like, but I still have ties.  I still get emails from the Harvard Bookstore.  A few minutes ago I got notification that they'd cancelled their author event for this evening.  They wrote:
Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, the runners, the spectators, and the first responders.  Stay safe and take care of each other."
I sincerely hope never to receive an email like this from a bookstore again.  My thoughts are with all of Boston today.

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