Fourth of July on the Esplanade with the Boston Pops!
This is why my darling husband (from who’s insane head this lark emerged) and I squeezed onto a packed MBTA train, crammed into a bursting Green Line T and finally wedged into the throng of 800,000 of my closest and most personal friends.
Aside: I must categorize everyone present as my closest and most personal friend because there was the touching of sweaty skin and that is about as close personal as it can possibly get in the friendship category for me.
I am not one who likes crowds. I don’t feel energized when I think of a Gathering of People in Celebration of Anything. I feel anxious and crabby. As I get older, my idea of a crowd now encompasses more than just me on a lonely stretch of beach. I mean it–that is my idea of waaaay too many people in one place.
I know this is a bit…quirky and it ‘s leading me down the path of The Scary Loner:
Therefore when beloved husband called me in the middle of a holiday spent working at the hospital to see if I want to go to Boston (what) to see the fireworks (the hell) at the Esplanade (are you talking about)? My instinct was to hang up.
Actually, I think I did hang up. But then I felt bad. It’s not his fault I work on holidays with the incurably insane and their dysfunctional families. See, if my batty granny was stuck in the hospital with a bladder infection, I wouldn’t glom about bothering the nurse (me). I’d be ouside! enjoying the sunshine! watching a parade! eating at a cookout! I couldn’t live with my duplicity so I called back and said, “Sure, let’s go to Boston!”
The ordeal of getting to the Esplanade was nothing compared to moving around once inside. I really don’t want to try to describe it because it’s actually something I’m trying NOT to think of anymore. Let’s just say we finally found a spot at the edge of the Charles River, beneath a Locust tree that was about one foot by one foot. It was quite cozy.
The nice thing about our late arrival was that we missed the entire day of roasting in the hot sun. We were able to see the F-14 flyover, always an incredible thrill. We only had to wait an hour or so before the music started. Eveyone was pretty chummy by the time we arrived so it was a nice atmosphere.
There were a couple of firsts for me on the 125th year of the Boston Pops on the 4th at the Esplanade: it was actually the first time I’ve been to the Esplanade on the 4th although I’ve lived in Massachusetts for over thirty years. It was also the first time I’ve ever sat through commercial breaks while listening to an out door concert.
What a novel concept! Life on the Esplanade did continue during the commercial breaks in case anyone was wondering.
The fireworks were incredible. There were things in the sky I had never seen before (jelly fish! really!) and the show went for an hour–no commerical breaks. Yes, it was amazing.
But all good things must come to an end. And when that precise moment came, all 800,000 of my close and personal friends made for the footbridge. It was like being part of a giant, sweaty amoeba, just oozing along. Once on the street, the crowd thinned appreciably which allowed us to get our bearings. We decided not to take the T. I think it was the horrifying grimace on my face that perished the wonder of weather it would be faster to take the Green Line or the Orange Line.
“Let’s walk!” It was nice, much cooler and the air was fresh. No stuffy, crowed underground trains for us! Then we looked at the time when we reached the Common. The last train was scheduled to leave at 11:30 p.m. It was 11:25 p.m!
“LET’S RUN!!!!” Off we went, in inappropriate shoes, tearing past Down Town crossing, Government Center and Haymarket to North Station. Past many people heading in the same direction but in no particular hurry. Interesting, why were we the only ones running for the train???
“I don’t think we’re going to make it!” panted my husband.
“You don’t know that until we get there! Keep running!” I gasped, falling behind. If anyone was going to catch that train, it was going to be him! Then he could hold the train until I jogged in five minutes later. That was my master plan.
We made it easily. They always hold the train for an hour after the fireworks end. It seems everyone in Boston was aware of that except us so our sweaty sprint through the city was a nice work out but completely unnecessary in its level of desparation on my part.
Ahh well, live and learn. Another successful adventure with my sweetie.