Interruptions are a fact of life. Sometimes life interrupts your plans. Sometimes a fire alarm interrupts your bubble bath. After a 5 month interruption, I’m writing from a hotel in Boston. This has been a lengthy interruption indeed.
I go back and forth over whether I should bother to catch you up on the events of the past several months, or just pretend like I didn’t leave a gap of silence where my wit used to be. Truth is, maybe I’m just a little reluctant to summarize because when penned my feats don’t seem particularly exceptional. Here goes —
– Quit my job
– Got a new job
– Started a side business
– Did lots of yoga
– Drank lots of tea
– Read. A lot
– Fostered four puppies
– Went on a business trip to Boston
– Didn’t write.
Just because you’re interrupted doesn’t mean you fail to continue doing what you love – or – that you don’t go back to your hotel room and finish shaving your legs. So here I am, back to writing because it’s just what I have to do.
This week I’ve been in Boston and in residence at the longest-operating hotel in the United States. It’s remarkable for such a proud and thriving city how small and familiar it can feel in just a matter of days. My first evening I managed to wander back to Charles Street and the quiet, cozy little Italian trattoria I discovered on my only other trip to Boston. It was a complete accident, but amazingly comforting to wander into the familiar when far from home. The weather has been bitterly cold, putting a damper on my curiosity. But, I’ve found when forced to be content with the same 4 block radius I hurriedly maneuver during my walk to the office, I can still manage to find something beautiful every day. Like the charming clock tower nestled between 1970s style skyscrapers casting a warm yellow glow across the cobblestone streets as I follow my colleagues to a dive bar down Milk street. Or, the small but ornate brick building which due to it’s historical significance has caused traffic to diverge in a pentagon all around it – a pattern which would make no sense and for which a lesser building would have been demolished long ago. But, no, this small building with it’s golden lion and golden unicorn facing off over the spread wings of a golden eagle — it remains. And traffic – it is interrupted. Today, in the absence of snow and freezing rain from the early part of the week, I was able to finally look up and study in detail the buildings along State Street. I noticed pink stars standing out amongst blue concrete next to red brick. I took in carved faces among ornate filigree, I read plaques about men long dead who made an unremarkable patch of street significant simply because they lived nearby. It made me start thinking about legacies… but that’s a topic for another night. Let’s not get too carried away on my first day back.
Although enjoying the architecture, I came to Boston for an immersion program with my new firm. It was informative and uplifting. I’m on the company Kool-aid. Mission accomplished. After the noise of the week and being what I think of as “on” 24/7 — by “on” I mean actively combatting my tendency for Resting Bitchy Face (RBF) and my naturally introverted nature in the attempt to make some friendly collegial relationships — I was doing pretty well up until this evening. Right now I should probably be indulging in adult beverages in the time-honored act of camaraderie when you come through the other side of an intense experience with a group of people, but I was just so. damn. tired. I decided tonight was a night of aloneness. I slipped into my white, comfy hotel robe. I ran a hot bath, broke out my Kindle, and queued up for an hour or so diving further into Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl. After no more than about 20-30 minutes this piercing noise comes from the other room — from my hotel phone it sounds like. Then, the calmest female voice I’ve ever heard emits from the phone suggesting I leave my room and head towards the nearest emergency exit. I debate a moment on whether I should run down in my robe, water still beaded on my skin – but as I said, it seemed more a suggestion than a true emergency. I towel off, throw on pants and a sweatshirt, grab my phone, my Michael Kors watch and the necklace my father gave me on my 21st birthday and head down 8 flights of stairs to the lobby. I catch sight of one of my colleagues, and head to the hotel bar to see if anyone has a clue what’s going on. There is a mock UN conference taking place in the hotel and the place is crawling with what I assume are middle schoolers. I’m also assuming one dumb kid pulled the fire alarm, as within 5 minutes we are permitted to return to our rooms. Kids are assholes.
Now – at this point I do have another thought – is the Universe trying to force me to be social? I mean, really, you had to interrupt me mid bubble bath, shove me out of my room and just plop a social situation right down smack in the middle of my alone time? Well screw you Universe. I’m stubborn, and so here I am blogging alone in my hotel room instead. In hindsight, I probably should have taken the hint. Sometimes interruptions happen for a reason. Sometimes they are just an annoyance. Sometimes you need to put aside what you want to do and take the opportunity presented by said interruption. Other times you need to accept that your heart wants you to write, and so you just get started (again.)