I find writing very therapeutic. It helps me figure out what I’m feeling, when events so overwhelming hit so close to home. So here I am. Blogging again.
Monday April 15th, 2013
It was considered a holiday around Boston. We call it Patriots Day. We also call it Marathon Monday. Yanni had to work anyway, but I got the day off. When Yanni isn’t around, the TV isn’t on. He’s a boob tuber. I’m not so much. That afternoon, I was frittering away on WoW. Suddenly, just after 3pm I got a text from my mother in Tucson.
“OMG explosions at the marathon! Are u ok??”
Immediately I flipped on the TV. Holy Fuck! My mother should know better, I tend to avoid places of mass humanity. I worked in that area for years, dealing with marathon traffic. And I realized…OMG one of my friends still works there. The explosions went off right around her normal lunch break. Then I got another text from my friend Christine who is an anesthesiologist at Mass General Hospital.
“Are you watching the news?? Explosions in Copley Square. I tried calling Diane, no answer.” OMG please let her be OK. Please let her be OK.
I tried calling Diane. It rang about 10 times before it cut off into a busy signal. No voicemail. Then reports were coming in about an explosion/fire at the JFK library, which is right next to the UMass-Boston campus where I work. Now I appreciate holidays, but I was never more thankful that I was not on campus that day. We didn’t know what the fuck was going on. All we knew was terrorism just hit home. I texted Yanni, who was out working and not watching/listening to the news.
“Explosions at the Marathon finish line!”
“I can’t get in touch with Diane. She’s at the Pru.”
Then his phone went nuts with calls and texts as did mine. I had to keep facebook up with updates letting people know I was ok and that I wasn’t working that day. The TV was on 24/7 at that point. I was home, watching it unfold. Watching the reports of an 8 year old child losing his life. I cried. Not just cried, howling cries, sobs wracking my body. My faith in humanity shattered. I sent Diane a text and posted on her facebook wall. “Please call or text me and let me know you’re OK!” She finally answered about an hour later.
“Safe home 2 booms then thousands running towards me thought it was a gun man.”
I let out a sigh of relief and cried again. I texted Christine and Yanni letting them know Diane was safe. I responded to concerned responses on her facebook wall. She’s safe.
Tuesday April 16, 2013
I woke up to my 6:30am alarm clock, and saw the text from the UMB emergency alert system. Campus was closed due to the investigation into the fire/explosion at the JFK library. The entire campus was swept. I stayed home glued to the TV. The fire appeared to be mechanical, but coincidentally it broke out right after the 2nd explosion on Boyleston St.
Wednesday April 17, 2013
Campus was re-opened so I went back to work for the first time in 4 days. State troopers and military personnel were roaming the subway stations, randomly checking bags. Their presence was comforting and nerve-wracking at the same time. At this point, we had no clue who had done this and why. The Bruins played that night against the Buffalo Sabres. While the game itself was nothing special, what happened before the game was an amazing sight. I flipped on the TV just as the pregame show was playing a montage to “Home”. And then the National Anthem. Rene Rancourt made his way onto the ice, clearly emotional. He wavered on the first bars of the Star Spangled Banner, then suddenly dropped his mic as the crowd strongly and emotionally thundered out the anthem a capella. I lost it. As I’m sure many around the city did.
Thursday April 18, 2013
President Obama made a day trip to lead a interfaith service. He didn’t stay very long, but his words were powerful. Authorities now also had a pretty good idea of who they were looking for, and released photos to the public looking for a break in the case. It happened late that night. At approximately 10:30pm, just as I was going to bed, the “suspects” were likely carrying out another attack at MIT when they ambushed MIT Police Officer Sean Collier right outside the Stata Center. They then carjacked an SUV right around the corner from my house and sped down the street and across the bridge into Watertown where the shootout and explosions happened in the middle of the night.
Friday April 19, 2013
Since I was asleep through the drama of what took place that night, I woke up at 6:30am to my alarm clock and saw 2 panicked texts from my mother timestamped 1:30am as well as a text from the UMB emergency alert system. Campus closed as a result of the MBTA shutdown. What? I scrolled through my mother’s texts.
“OMG cop killed on MIT campus. Bet ur glad ur not working there. Stay safe. Will be out there in a week. xoxo.” Really Ma? Even if I was still working there, I wouldn’t have been there at THAT hour!
“Why am i watchin news explosion and chase to watertown. Two suspects arrested in watertown FBI involved. Don’t know if related to bombs on Monday or the shooting of cop at MIT. OMG stay safe xoxo.”
I got out of bed and headed to the living room where Yanni was glued to the TV.
“What the FUCK is going on?!”
“City of Cambridge on lockdown. We can’t leave the house. They’re in Watertown. the T is shut down.”
“Yeah I got the text from UMB, I’m not working today.”
As we watched in shock on TV the events that were unfolding down the street, we heard the sirens blaring down Western Ave as they zoom zoomed past my house and into Watertown. I wondered if my brother in law who is in the Army Reserve was called to duty. My sister had texted me earlier in the week letting me know they were ok. But I couldn’t move. I could only watch. Watched the gathering at the Watertown and Arsenal Mall down the street. Watched as they identified the MIT Officer who was killed in the line of duty. Watched as they searched the Cambridge apartment where they lived. I felt a small relief that they lived on the other side of Cambridge on the Somerville line. I live on the Cambridge/Watertown line. Yeah, small relief.
Friday night was a WoW raid night for me. Shortly after the raid started, the texts were pouring in again. I whirled around to the TV. Across the photo of his face was the magic word. CAPTURED. And I cried again. I was only healing trash at that point in the game. So I was kinda one-handed healing while the other hand quickly wiped away the tears.
They messed with the wrong fucking city. MY fucking city. I was angry. No. I was wicked pissed. Those cocky assholes thought they could just blend in, drop some bombs, kill and maim innocent people and not get caught? Well guess what. Suspect #1 got shot, blown up and run over. Suspect #2 ran, tried to hide and got his ass kicked. Boston shut everything the fuck down and went after him. With an entire city, region and and nation backing them up. I am damn proud of my city and of Boston’s Finest, for not resting, and not relenting until we were safe again.