I return to my parents’ house outside of Boston – Wellesley, Massachusetts, to be precise. On this visit, I flew, faster than my previous drive from San Francisco, but less exciting. Today is pleasantly warm so that the leafless trees here do not look so much like death. The sun still sets quite early at 4pm. Fortunately, I have a brother coming soon with beer to keep me entertained after dark.
Life has changed. I approach this visit home much differently than before when I expected so much from my parents and hoped to change our dynamic. As they say in Spanish: SOCKS, or “it is what it is.” I ask little of my parents and stay with them to be helpful and interactive. I do set boundaries and behavior expectations. I won’t sleep in the basement. I won’t partake in mother’s freak-out over food shopping.
This may be my last big holiday home so I had best enjoy this pleasant week. A new job may call soon with its dense schedule, curtailing leisurely vacations. Someday I’d like to host Thanksgiving like my grandparents did when I was young.
I exit the airport into the crowded Boston subway, lively on this Monday morning. Boston remains so provincial and oddly conservative. People are not as worldly as they are in San Francisco, but they are more genuine in Boston. The subway crowd lacks the piercings and blue hair found all over the Mission District. I wonder where I can buy a decent cup of organic, single-origin, pour-over coffee.