Planning & Prep Work From a Boston Perch

Did anyone else catch that ‘60 Minutes’ piece on the Millennium Tower in San Francisco? The high-rise building is sinking a few inches per year, and starting to lean as well. For those of us not paralyzed with fear at such a height, it seems lofty living is a desirable, if expensive, goal. The older I get, the more afraid of heights I grow, so I’m good with crawling around the lower levels of this planet with all the other human ants.

Sometimes, though, we yearn to fly and soar as high as we can go, and looking up at the tops of buildings and cathedrals and skyscrapers has always thrilled me. There’s something to be said for a bird’s-eye view of the world. When I was a kid, I used to climb a very tall evergreen in our backyard. The higher I went, the more exhilarated I felt. A little terrified too, and at times I would cling to the sturdy trunk and close my eyes to calm myself before carefully climbing back down.

I’m better at more reasonable perches, such as the two-and-a-half story vantage-point of our Boston home. (I say two-and-a-half because the first floor is actually above street level by quite a bit, in the brownstone tradition.) From there, one has a decent view of the street, and the John Hancock Tower. If you lean out the window a bit and strain your neck you can also glimpse a bit of the Prudential Center.

It was here that I spent a single night last weekend to prepare for the holiday season events. There’s the annual Holiday Stroll with Kira, and the relatively new Holiday Children’s Hour with Suzie’s family (and hopefully a few other kids to keep Milo and Oona company). Both have become happy holiday traditions which I’m hoping to keep going. Since I won’t likely be in Boston again until December, I had to decorate, do some laundry, and get a few things together beforehand. It was gleefully anticipatory work – my favorite sort of work – and I loosely plotted out possibilities in my head. ‘Tis almost the season…

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