The day that I got Spur, I drove home with her sitting in my lap. As if we were old friends, Spur sat there with her little chin on my shoulder and went to sleep. From that moment, I knew that I would never let her go, and that wherever I ended up in life would have to have room for a dog.
That means that she’s a factor in any moves I contemplate making. So, when I was considering going to Dublin for my PhD, I was looking into Ireland’s regulations for importing pets. And when I think about moving to Boston to go to Boston College, I’m thinking about what life will be like with Spur.
Much to my delight, I’ve found Boston to be a very dog-friendly city. With this beautiful spring weather, the people of this city are out en masse, and they’ve brought their dogs out with them. I couldn’t even begin to estimate how many dogs I’ve seen walking down busy sidewalks, being petting by excited children, sitting by their owners at tables on restaurant patios. They’re all over.
This afternoon, my friend Alaina took me to a charming bookstore, Brookline Booksmith. I instantly love this bookstore for several reasons. First, because it has a fantastic selection of books, some of the best cards ever, and a cellar full of used books, which I wouldn’t even go into for fear of temptation. Second, it has a story, and like places with stories. It’s a bookstore that’s been serving the Brookline community for some time, and several years back, a Barnes and Noble came in just down the street. (At this point in the story, I’m thinking, “You with your theme park, multi-level, homogenize-the-world mochacchino land.”) The community responded by determinedly NOT going the the Barnes and Noble, sticking instead with their beloved, local store. (“One, two, three, four, We don’t want your superstore.”) And their resistance was enough to close “the big bad chain store.” It’s a good story.
But the thing that absolutely sold me on the store was the dogs. Yes, that’s right. Dogs are allowed in the bookstore. It’s a small thing, really, but the combination of two of my favorite things just fills my heart with joy. I always tell people that I would take Spur with me everywhere if I could; this bookstore gives me the sense that if I come to Boston, I’m likely to be closer to that dream. Now, that may not be enough of a reason to come here in and of itself, but it is definitely something to go on my list of positives.