I’ve started to wonder if I’m now more from Stockholm than I am from Boston. Is it time to modify the blog title from Boston Blatte to Stockholm Svartskalle? I’ve been in Boston for over 2 weeks based out of my childhood home in my teenage room (A good friend of mine calls it the time capsule) and instead of feeling a rediscovery of my roots, I’m discovering my roots could very well be of that plant variety which only needs air. It’s unnerving to mull the thought that I belong more to no-man’s land than my homeland or my adopted land.
Outlandish takes on a whole new meaning.
My quest to discover the Boston vicinity and surroundings recently turned myopic to narrow down to my hometown, Watertown. I caught a glimpse of a pamphlet from the Watertown Historical Society which pointed out the historical significance of a local historic house, Fowle House.
Turns out, a copy of the Declaration of Independence was read out here to get feedback from the locals before it was sent off to King George. You know the trite expression “George Washington slept here”…Well, he really did sleep in Watertown. And Paul Revere lived here. This place is way more than the places I went to school and hung out at with teenage friends.
Down at the Watertown Free Public Library (And there’s a whole story about why libraries in Massachusetts include the word “free” which I still need more research into) in a moment of nostalgia in the original oak-beamed section dating from 1884, chatting up the librarian (those people are much unappreciated and unsung invaluable resources) I started hearing more and more and more about Watertown’s history.
It floored me how unaware I was despite having lived in Watertown since the age of 2 months and attended K-12 here.
It reminds me of when I found out that the building on Pålsundet, Heleneborg, at the end of my street in central Stockholm was the sight of Alfred Nobel’s brother’s fatal accident when experimenting with explosives. This was after more than a decade of living there and having looked into nearly every other notable structure in Stockholm.
I’ve now got two books on Watertown checked out from the Library. I’m from this place dammit. Seems my ignorance of it proves it.
You never know your hometown as well as you get to know other places.
I’m gonna do something ‘bout that.