The Train to Maine

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During the time we were in Boston visiting friends, we took a trip to Maine. Christopher, my twelve year old son, has memorized most of the routes that Amtrak takes around this great nation, and so he was quick to tell me that there had been an extension of the Downeaster route up the coast.  Now it goes from Boston all the way up to Freeport and Brunswick.  We were totally in luck because this was only true as of last year.  Through the miracle of rail, we could be in the state of Maine in about three hours.

Now in my head, I thought that New England was, well, all built up, so this was amazing to me that this train expansion was so new.  How did people get to the LL Bean shopping campus without a stop in Freeport?  My friend, Heidi, a professor who teaches college in Virginia, was researching in Brunswick, and had invited us up to see her.  Brunswick was the last stop on the newish route, and Brunswick was exactly where we wanted to go. Sometimes, the universe just seems to cooperate.

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Boston Strong

Call me Miss Superlucky.  My best friend from high school, who is a super intellectual property lawyer in Boston, invited Christopher and me to visit her this summer in beautiful Brookline, Massachusetts, a stone’s throw from Boston, one of my favorite cities in the world.  Cindy and I were not only classmates, but great friends and debate partners at Klein Forest High School, and so it is completely unsurprising to me that she became the kind of lawyer that you would want to have if you needed one.  Her husband, Dave, ran the Boston marathon this year, as he does every year, and was safely home when the bombings started.   It was an excruciating time for the city, and yet since I have been here, I feel completely and utterly safe.  Bostonians have been unfailingly polite and helpful, and Christopher and I agree that Boston has the kind of fortitude that is a comfort.  They really are “Boston Strong,” and we see shirts everywhere we go reminding us of this undeniable fact.

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The Old State House

When you consider the history of Boston, which is really the history of America, you cannot help but catch a serious case of patriotism.   Christopher, who is almost 12, in the midst of his own personal revolution from childhood to adolescence, could hardly contain his excitement as we boarded our direct flight from Houston to Boston on July 11th.  This in itself is a miraculous example of freedom to me:  that we can get on a plane and be in Boston in about three hours.  We can leave the southwest and be in the northeast in no time at all. Continue reading