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Posts Tagged ‘downtown’

Most of the time, I don’t mind the office life. (Though we all know I’d rather be writing in a cafe in some exotic location.) My office has enough space for me, and I’ve brought in a few colorful items to make it feel homey. However, after a few hours of working within the same four walls, I need to get out.

I usually bring my lunch from home – leftovers or soup in a Tupperware box, stacked neatly in the fridge with everyone else’s leftovers. There’s also a food court downstairs, making it even less necessary to leave the building. But I always need to stretch my legs, and I frequently have errands to run or someplace I want to visit. And I want to get out into the city, get to know my new downtown neighborhood, try to learn the rhythm of this new dance I’m a part of every day. So even if it’s freezing (and it frequently is), I pull on my coat and hat, sling my purse over my shoulder, and I’m off.

Often I head out the door and turn east, to visit the post office or the bank or spend a little while browsing at the Brattle. I’ve treated myself to a lunch or two at Thinking Cup, on the days when we run out of leftovers or I need a little something special.

Sometimes I head west, either to ramble around the Public Garden, pop into Paper Source to ogle the pretty stationery, or stroll down to Copley Square to browse the closing sale at Borders. (The big, glass-fronted Borders in Downtown Crossing is staying open, but the one near Copley will be gone soon.) Sometimes I head north up Charles Street, to browse the clothing racks at Second Time Around, and peek in the pretty windows of boutiques whose wares I can’t afford.

When it’s warmer I plan to take my lunch and a book out to the Common, to read and eat and watch the people and let the breezes play with my hair. It’s still too cold to do that, but for now, at least I can get a little exercise, take care of a life detail or two, or simply stop in somewhere for a chai latte, a good book or a bouquet of fresh flowers. (This habit is not, I admit, always great for my wallet. But it’s good for my body and my soul.)

How do you spend your lunch breaks?

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1. If the train has already pulled in as I reach the bus-stop sidewalk (from which you can see the platform), I’m probably not going to catch it – even if I run.
2. It’s nearly impossible to juggle a travel mug and a book, and find a way to hold on. (Solution: trying to get up early enough to finish my tea at home.)
3. No matter how chilly it is, I’ll probably have to take off my hat after a few minutes of being crammed into a car with dozens of other people.
4. My mom (whose main quibble with Europe was its crowded public transport systems) would hate this commute.
5. Fingerless gloves make it easier to turn pages on the train, but then my fingers get cold walking to the station.
6. Even if I’m running late, it’s better to get off at Park Street and walk down the Common than to crowd onto a Green Line train to Boylston. For one thing, they’re often delayed; for another, sometimes I can’t squeeze through the crowd to get off.
7. The smells of the food court downstairs from my office are quite tempting, even if I’ve already had breakfast.
8. As long as it’s chilly enough to require a hat in the mornings, I will never arrive at work with perfect hair. (I probably never will anyway.)
9. I still can’t believe I get to stroll down Boston Common on my way to and from work every single day.
10. I have a much shorter commute than many of my co-workers, and I do not have to deal with parking meters or garages; for all of this, I am grateful.

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