Tuesday, August 16, 2011

My walk down memory lane in Boston...

Over the weekend, my best friend Payal and I decided to take a road trip and head over to Boston. It is a place that has so many incredible memories for us since we both went to college there. I was at Boston College (BC) while Payal was at Northeastern and her husband Sameer was at Babson, and I'm pretty sure all of us feel that those were the best years of our lives! I know a lot of people who went to school in America, and aside from Boston, LA and New York seem to have been the favourite cities for most of them to go to University. Having said that, I am so incredibly grateful I didn't opt to study in one of the larger cities as Boston was the perfect mix of large city with the feel of a small one. In fact, I do think it's the perfect mix of European mixed with American too, as the feel of the city is so much cleaner, more conservative and much more preppy than the average American one. I don't know too many people who've been to college in Boston recently so I can't really tell, but the vibe of the student population there seems to be a lot different now than it was in our day- pre-September 11th. The International students ran the town and it wasn't odd to see an eighteen year old back then with a Porsche or Ferrari or other such fancy car (I was not part of that club- I took the tram the 2 years I lived off campus!). The clubs played a mix of international music and were packed with kids who were all definitely under 21 years old, but with the right fake ID and over time, the right connections, were welcomed through the velvet ropes without a problem. Armani Cafe on the posh Newberry street was the place to be at, and kids loved hanging out there in the afternoon, sipping on their wine and polishing off what was left of their Torta Della Nonna- the best chocolate desert, EVER, before heading off to shop at Ricardi, the fashionable multi-brand boutique located on the street. M80 was a nightclub that most of us who graduated from that era look back at being an institution in itself, where we spent our Wednesday and Saturday nights, whereas Thursdays were spent at Avalon, another popular club on Landsdowne street. Boston seemed like a gift that was presented to us from older generations, that we left behind, 4 years later, for the younger ones to inherit. Alas, a few years post September 11th a group of us visited one weekend to reminisce the old times. M80 had shut down in our senior year so we knew that was gone, but to walk into Avalon on a thursday night and find it playing country music was almost too much to bear. The closing of the Emporio Armani and Armani Cafe that has now been replaced by a Zara seemed to be a telling sign of how things had shaped since we left. It was a sad, sad realization that as we'd aged, our beloved city had too.
When Payal and I visited this weekend we, thanks to two previous trips, knew exactly what to expect. We reminisced about old times while walking around and making some new memories. It did help that while out at a shop on Saturday morning we realized we'd accidentally come to Boston on "Tax Free Weekend," a concept we didn't even know existed in America! So all the stores were tax free on those two days and we went a bit nutty shopping. I wanted to go over to BC and walk around the campus like I always do, but I didn't really get a chance to do that neither did I get to take pictures like I wanted. So I'm posting some pics I had taken of my campus and of Boston the last time I was there. While returning to NYC I was messaging a friend and fellow Bostonite currently in India and telling him how happy I was to be there and how it must be something in the air of the city. "I can imagine," he replied, "it makes me so happy just knowing you are there, can you imagine how happy I'd be if I was??!!" Aah... those were the best days of our lives!
Gorgeous city!
Entrance to BC
I lived on campus my first two years of college. This was my dorm my Sophomore year
BC Pride!!
More pictures of our campus
Fulton Hall- the building for the School of Management, where most of my classes were

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