There are some sections of Boston that hint of European flavor, that conjure streets in London or Paris as one is walking along and absentmindedly gazing at certain squares. These little pockets of Old World charm pop up throughout the historic city, and I’m lucky to have several in my neighborhood. There’s also a stretch along the Boston Public Garden and around the Park Plaza that brings to mind the Europe of fantasy and make-believe – where softly-shaded stone and wrought-iron window gates grant forbidden views into living rooms that go back over a century.

Such a rich history has always grounded the Northeast for me. It’s why, no matter where I may go, this will always be my home. I need something solid, something that has stood for time immemorial, to make me feel secure. I’d like to be one of those people who could pick up and move and make a home wherever he might find himself – and for a certain time I might be able to do that – but I’ll always seek something more stable. Something that has withstood the test of time.

Of course, the entire earth has done as much, and everywhere one steps has been in existence for longer than we can feasibly grasp. Now I’m getting existential, and put in mind of an astronomy course where the size of the universe was contemplated to the point of nihilistic hopelessness. It’s dangerous, when you really start thinking about it. The grain of sand. The implacable stone. The drop of water. The ray of sunlight.

As day turns to night, the city enters its slumber. Light fades, but for the moment colors turn a little richer.

The sky goes dark. The light of humans, conjured centuries ago, flicks on with a switch. The comfort of civilization cries out, and I try to imagine a time when our lives and schedules were ruled by the light and the weather. More existential crap, more muddled rumination. Across one ocean it is already night. Across another it is nearly morning. We are somewhere in-between.

Echoes of Europe whisper from the wide mouth of a stone urn, like a poem from the past.

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