Love Letters to Boston: Social Distancing Edition

When social distancing first started, I stopped writing this column. I’m out-of-state at the moment, back in my hometown and missing Boston like crazy. Aren’t we all? It felt wrong to just write another Love Letter to Boston about Hercules Mulligan or the Faneuil Hall weathervane as if nothing had changed (Although maybe, in future weeks, we’ll bring it back… a bit of normalcy couldn’t hurt.) 

So instead, this is a love letter to present-day Boston. To my strong, resilient city that sticks together even when that means staying apart. I miss everything about it — from sunny walks along the Charles River Esplanade to being splashed by passing cars on Mass Ave. Even the deafening squeal of a T car entering Boylston would be music to my ears right about now. But in lieu of all those things, which I will wait patiently for until it’s safe for everyone to be out again, here are some things happening in Boston right now that remind me of why I’m proud to call this city my home. 

(Note: Some of these videos were taken before public health guidelines became more specific. If you must go out in public, please remember to wear a mask and keep a distance of six feet or more from others. See CDC guidelines here for more specifics on how to keep yourself and others safe and healthy.)  

Applause for Essential Workers

Like many cities across the U.S. and around the world, Bostonians at home designated time to thank essential workers by opening up their windows, getting out on balconies and porches, and making as much noise as they could.

John Krasinski’s Some Good News Thanks Beth Israel Employees

John Krasinski is quickly making his way to #1 Bostonian in my heart (even though he’s from Newton, and you never want to get a BU student started on the fact that Newton does not equal Boston). His YouTube show, Some Good News, has been a bright spot during social distancing, and he paid a heartwarming thank you to some Boston healthcare professionals in the third episode by giving them Red Sox tickets for life. The video included cameos from some of your favorite Boston icons, including Big Papi! 

The Red Sox May Not Be Playing, But in Boston “Sweet Caroline” Always Is

One Bostonian took a page from Italy’s book in starting a sing-along from his window. This video reminded me of the feeling of being in a huge crowd at Fenway, feeling like you’re singing along with the whole city. The ballpark may be old and the seating may be tight but it’s a great way to feel like a part of the community. Until we can be back there again, this little sing-along was a nice tribute to the ways we support each other while we’re apart.

A Nurse’s Alternative Wedding in an Uncertain Time

When her destination wedding was canceled due to coronavirus concerns, Alyssa Gerany and her now-husband Ray Singh decided that they didn’t want to wait to say “I do.” Alyssa is a cardiovascular and thoracic operating room nurse at Beth Israel. Being a healthcare worker right now means that a lot of her life is uncertain, but one thing was for sure. She wanted to have the joy of marrying the man she loved on that day, because we can never be sure of what tomorrow holds.


These stories, amongst many others, demonstrate what I love about Boston as a city and a community. It’s easy to feel lonely right now, but every time I hear a story about the kindness, selflessness, generosity, or joy of others, it makes me feel a little less alone.

For now, I’m going to go don my Sox cap, play “Sweet Caroline,” and look forward to the day that we can all meet again in Boston.

 

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