My husband and I are country mice. We’ve both lived in city settings but we currently have a quiet rural life that we love.
Except once in awhile, we crave a little more excitement, bright lights, a great museum, good food.
We spent the last few days in the city of Boston, in the state of Massachusetts, in the USA.
Boston is the perfect city for country mice. It’s a big city that feels small, it has tons of beauty, indoors and out, and there are buildings and monuments everywhere that feel familiar and comforting to all Americans, even if they’ve never been to Boston before.
I want to show you how beautiful Boston is in autumn by focusing on three highlights of the trip—a farmers’ market in Copley Square, a beloved team winning the big game, and our ramblings around the green spaces of the city. Whether you’re a country mouse or a town mouse, there’s something in Boston for you!
All Americans and maybe many folks in other countries, too, know that Boston has had a sad, sad year. The bombings that tore apart the Boston Marathon, and many people’s bodies and lives, continue to leave their marks on the city.
For months, Copley Square, in the heart of the Back Bay area and very near the site of the bomb attacks, was given over to an impromptu memorial to the victims of the bombs, where Bostonians and visitors to the city could add a tribute and share their sadness and determination to be “Boston Strong.”
Now, the sad memorabilia has been moved to the city archives and Copley Square is back to hosting a weekly farmers’ market that brings a healthy, life-filled beauty to the city. And the country mice felt very much at home here! We have apples where we come from!
Boston has always been mad about their sports teams and, especially, their baseball Red Sox. The Red Sox had a magical year this year that culminated when they won baseball’s World Series on Wednesday night.
I know a lot of people don’t really get how a sports team can bring a city up off its knees but, trust me, Bostonians feel that their Red Sox did just that. The players made “B Strong” their motto and worked to give the city a happy distraction from the troubles but also worked tirelessly in charitable ways to ease the pain of the victims of the attacks.
So, their win in the championship was a storybook ending. It didn’t take away the pain or give back the lives lost, but it still mattered, a lot, to the city. A happy city is a beautiful city. And a happy city is very welcoming to country mice, as long as they cheer for the home team!
Boston is a city to walk in. It’s not huge and it has so many beautiful parks and green spaces that it invites a slow pace and appreciation. We saw pocket gardens in the Back Bay Fens and in the tiny spaces in front of the brownstones on Beacon Hill. The beautiful cemetery in the Boston Common creates a still spot for contemplation right next to one of the busiest commercial streets in the city.
The Public Gardens and Boston Common provide city dwellers with huge spaces to admire nature and just hang out and have fun. One of the prettiest areas is along the Charles River, which runs between Boston and Cambridge, into the Atlantic Ocean. Right next to traffic tearing down busy Storrow Drive, joggers jog, dogs frolic, crew teams row, little boats sail, and a busy city rests.
The country mice found this all very reassuring when they got a little overwhelmed by the rich food, flowing wine, and bright lights of the big city!
The country mice are home now, fat and happy, with fine memories of town. We’d recommend Boston to any of you who love a small big city, history, and beauty! Are you a town mouse or a country mouse?