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Boston; Thoughts From Our Staff.

Since starting Lucy Out Loud, I had decided that our posts would remain strictly music related. Though that was difficult at times, we had slowly transitioned to that. However, there are some things that need to be said or need to be shared. Earlier, I re-blogged a photostream of tweets, showing overwhelming kindness that I don’t think many people expected to see. What occurred yesterday in Boston is not something I had intended on posting about, but Eric Riley, a dear friend of mine and contributor to Lucy Out Loud, has incredibly close ties with Boston. As both a writer and photographer for the site, Eric and I have had our fair shares of conversations that have made me appreciate who he is as both a person and a friend. I knew immediately, before he had even mentioned that he wanted to write about it, that this was something we would share with our readers. If you have made it through my short ramble, please take a moment to read Eric’s thoughts below. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those in Boston.

I consider myself an honorary Bostonian, of sorts.

My oldest sister lives in the city. Her boyfriend lives in the city. Their friends live in the city. My youngest sister is going to medical school in the city following high school. My brother is making plans to be there soon. It’s going to be home for all of us.

It started as a typical Monday, which, in my case, it usually just a groggy, red-eyed extension of Sunday. I pulled a hoodie over myself, threw on yesterday’s jeans, wedged my headphones into my ears, and walked to classes.

My semester is coming to an end. And with the end of the semester comes the end of my time here. Then, that “real world” thing starts. And, for me, it will be starting in Boston.

I’ve been in New England for four years, and for as much as I’ve disliked my school at times, I’ve always imagined myself in the city following graduation. Originally, as a high-schooler, I pictured New York as my destination. But then I moved here. And Boston caught me. All of it. The history, the people, the music, the shining black and gold of my Bruins; it’s going to be my home. My passions are in the city.

For the past year or so, I’ve been posting photos and reviews up on the blog, and whether or not there’s a huge following, they’re still my stories. And the fact that I’m telling them is good enough for me. People have seen my photos and people have read my words, and it’s been amazing and I’ve loved every second of being able to do what I love.

Music is always what gets me through the day. It’s what saved my life; it’s what made me. Photography is what I want to do with the rest of my life. And Boston is where I plan to do it.

On Monday morning, I opened my laptop and the flood of tweets and newsfeed updates rushed in. Explosions, bombs, marathon, chaos, blood, terror attack?, warnings, caution; Boston. My phone was in my hand instantly. It rang. And rang. And rang. No answer. The number you are trying to reach… I sent a text. And another. Five minutes went by. Five melted into ten, ten into twenty. Still no replies.

The table vibrated. “We’re okay.” The world slowed down, just for a moment. But for as long as it needed to. My sister was all right. Her boyfriend was all right. My friends were safe. But their city, the city I want to call home someday soon, it was rattled. But it was not ruined.

Because you can’t ruin it. You can destroy buildings and you can demolish roads and you can defile physical landmarks, but that is not what a city is. That is what a city is made of. A city is people. A city is families. A city is love, and friends, and the people within it and the memories and interactions that they all have. It’s the small restaurants you go to on Sundays, it’s the shortcuts through alleys you take when you’re running late, it’s the strangers you smile at on the train who have the same schedule as you, it’s your team winning by one in the last minute, it’s the songs you hear as cars pass by with their windows down. It’s not just about people; it’s about all of those people together.

My Monday was about saving rock and roll, about the wait almost being over. That’s what my past week had been about. But for as much as we try to save it, it saves us even more. It’s the tie we all have to one another. It’s the language we all speak. It’s the religion we all follow. It’s the heart we all hold. It’s the soul we all share. It’s resilient. It’s enduring. It’s stubborn. It’s endless. It’s ineffectible, but can have the biggest effects. It’s intangible, but it can touch – it can caress, it can grab, it can hold, it can hurt, it can heal.

I don’t really know what else to say about what has happened. I don’t even think any of this has been relevant. But I have a tendency to talk, a lot, so I did.

Regardless, here’s the way I see it: there are those who see humanity as in its last days, and have their towels in hand, ready to toss them into the ring for good. But they’re getting far ahead of themselves. Humanity is not gone. I still believe there’s good in the world. And in times like these, it shines. We come together, and whatever darkness that has started to descend is blinded away, overtaken by hope, by strength, by faith, by compassion, by heart.

And Boston has plenty.

We will fight. We will recover.

We will sing, we will dance, we will play.

And next year, we will run.

-Eric Riley

  1. lucy-out-loud posted this