A Weekend in Boston
Walking down Commonwealth Avenue isn't anything special. It's like any other road, littered by local businesses and polluted with one too many cars. But, for some reason, I enjoyed every step I took down the street. Maybe because the atmosphere gave off a palpable sense of newness, unlike the dreary campus I left only a few hours earlier. Or perhaps I reveled in the sophistication associated with schools in Boston. Either way, I felt as if I belonged and had been here for years. I carried two heavy bags with me, hoping it made me look like a productive student. The people who passed by looked too busy to notice me. I was glad for that. I didn't want to seem like a freshmen or a lost international student. The streets, though open to the general public, felt like a road flooded by an overwhelming pool of students.
I'm not sure what to make of Boston. A part of me wants to say I enjoyed it for the food, culture, and area, but that might be a lie. For the few days I was there, I was an experienced freshman, new to everyone but too knowledgeable to exude the antics of one. But I think that's what I loved the most: being someone new to everyone else and meeting people I had no idea existed just one day prior.
For the longest time, I felt stuck in the bubble of friends I had. There was nowhere to go, stuck with the same group until the next round of freshmen and newcomer comes. To me, this was the world and earth: Buffalo and New York with no in between. I guess visiting Boston felt like a renewal of some sort, a reminder that my life isn't simply based in two places with no room for any type of maneuvering. It isn't that Buffalo is a bad place or I had a stigma against my hometown. I guess going to Boston felt like living in an alternate reality for a few days.
I knew going back to Buffalo meant being at the top of the food chain again. I didn't have to worry about impressing people or working myself up the social ladder. In a way, that's a blessing in itself. For once though, despite my introverted self, I liked meeting new people every hour. It meant leaving all the bad memories back in the barren wasteland I called Buffalo and starting a new life. These were people who knew nothing of me except the good and that felt welcoming.
Visiting Boston wasn't supposed to be a testament on how life could have been but it ended up being that way. It's hard not to compare, be it from the extraordinary recreational center to the relationships I could have made in Boston. The thought is always there, that perhaps going to school in Boston would have been the same as going to school in Buffalo, except with more success. The grass is seemingly always greener on the other side and, for some time, that seemed to be Boston: the real university experience I was hoping to get out of Buffalo.
It's hard not to wonder, be it the friends I could have made or the career path I might have gone down. Whether love would have been any different or if the people would have treated me better. Would I have learned more? How secure of my future would I be? Maybe, actually, things might have turned out for the worse.
While walking down Commonwealth one last time, I couldn't help but have a bittersweet feeling swell up within me. Here was one of my dream colleges in high school, in all its glory, and I was leaving it without much regard. I had started a new life here, albeit only for a few days. It felt like I was leaving a home. I had grown attached without even spending a week. I'm not sure if that's because I wanted to leave Buffalo that badly or I just loved Boston that much.
No, I didn't find new love in Boston. I didn't even buy myself a souvenir. Yet, a part of me wishes I could have told a crazier story. I wish I somehow found the love my life on a whimsical weekend trip to Boston. I wish I ended up interviewing for a life-changing job. Heck, I wouldn't have even minded if Harvard decided to give me an acceptance letter after reading my blog.
But none of that really mattered because my plane was leaving in a few hours and Buffalo beckoned to me again. I didn't have a choice anymore and it was far too late to do anything about it. There wasn't much to do except head home and catch up on the Vampire Diaries episode I missed. I'd like to think there isn't much use in debating whether Boston would've been the better choice. Whether that's the truth or not, well, is also up to debate.
For now, I'm back in my home and that's Buffalo.