"Before I moved to Boston, I used to smile at people as I passed on the sidewalk. This was normal in my native St. Louis. I thought this was normal everywhere, but my simple gesture produced very strange reactions in my new home: a sudden fascination with foliage, trash, anything but eye contact; or an over-eager look that said, “Hey, baby, how you doing?” After a week, I gave up. After four years, I was ready to move back to a place where I felt people looked out for each other just a bit more.
So why am I still here?
Flash forward to a night just a few weeks ago. I am standing in an elementary school cafeteria – actually, standing is not the right word. I am surrounded by activity – I greet Zori’s mom and hand her a summer resource guide packet, congratulate first grader Jennixsa on the dance performance she has just completed, and check in to make sure the thirty organizations that have come to present information on summer programs have everything they need at their tables.Read more