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Many community festivals in Harvard Square attracted overflowing crowds that spilled into and closed the streets. The HONK! Parade during Oktoberfest was unlike anything I had seen. Think Dr. Seuss with brass horns, stilts, unicycles, and bikes!
The event attracted costumed brass bands from around the country and the world.
Not long after, I worked at the Coop during the Head of the Charles Regatta, the world’s largest two-day rowing event. With too many bodies in Harvard Square on a normal day, the regatta tipped the crowd to a crazy level and swamped the stores. At the end of my work shift, exhausted, I gladly left the colossal mess of clothes behind. It required several days to restock and put the displays back in order.
On October 27th, Boston’s Red Sox won the World Series for the first time in eighty-six years. Harvard students replaced the pumpkin on the head of the John Harvard statue with a Red Sox stocking cap and scarf. In Harvard Square, students and locals joined together for a party. Beth braved the crowd for a short while, as people danced on the roof of the Harvard T stop. She returned to her dorm to study while the loud celebration continued.
John teased and called Beth a lucky charm, since she moved to the area right before the big win.
Maria and Ben traveled to Boston for the first time with John to join Beth and me for Thanksgiving weekend and the holiday dinner at Legal Seafood. I bought tickets for The Lion King, on tour from Broadway. A work of genius in every way, from the set to the costumes. And, of course, we also had to see the fourth Harry Potter movie The Goblet of Fire, before we hugged goodbye too soon.
Beth’s ventures continued to impact family and friends in unexpected ways.
Soon after her Boston trip, Maria shared her big life-changing decision with us. A college sophomore, she planned to graduate with a double major from Heidelberg in Ohio—and when she did, she would move near Beth to teach. I supported her decision, though it made me sad to think of both of my girls in Massachusetts in the future, more than 700 miles away from John and me in our Tiffin hometown.
I understood the draw of the Cambridge area. I had never been in another city as vibrant. A place that charmed with old-world history and diverse humanity, all the while assaulting the senses with too many emergency vehicles, taxis, cars, and bikes.
A place that also isolated and challenged me every day for the nine months I lived there.
Next: A Third Job!
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