It’s been over a month since we landed in Boston. We explored the city, started to understand its quirks and finally made a home for ourselves.
Studying in Boston University
It doesn’t come to anyone’s surprise that it can get ridiculously difficult to study for a Masters Degree, especially when it’s from a school that has a Communications faculty with a sterling reputation. A good bunch of the professors here either run their own Communications agency, won a Pulitzer Prize, are Law Scholars, or were straight up Chief Communications Officer at GE (yes, General Electric) just a while back.
However, it’s not so bad when you realise that everyone else is straining just as much from the weight of the readings and incessant assignments being thrown at them. The key thing I learnt in these 6 weeks was to just give myself as much time as I needed to do the work. I really like the new, very productive person I’ve been made to become, just squeezing every possible minute out of my day to do things. Can’t go out on Sunday? Just don’t go. Got a 4 hours break in between classes? That’s 1 assignment and a whole bunch of emails replied.Have a 35 minute commute home? Do the next reading on your phone.
“Taking The T”
Speaking of commuting, a daily Bostonian ritual called “Taking The T” has opened my eyes a lot. I just want to first say that I will never complain about the MRT again.
So, the T is the Train/Tram system that runs through Boston City. For Singaporeans (and Shanghainese and Hongkongers), a train stop means a shelter and some indication of when the train is coming.
In Boston, suburban train stops may or may not come with a shelter, and you’re expected to know that there is a stop based on yellow markings on the ground. It’s great in the summer, and alright even in the winter. But in the winter, being exposed in sub-zero temperature would be absolute torture for someone from a tropical climate. In the past 2 weeks, I’ve stood in 10 degree rain with chilling wind twice. But what if it’s late? Well, you better own a very good jacket because it’s going to get colder
In a span of 5 weeks, we saw whales in the ocean, walked the Boston Commons and picked apples at a farm. Boston is ridiculously close to nature and I must say that this makes me very happy.
We went whale watching a week into our time here, and I think everyone that comes here needs to go on a whale watching trip in the summer. The whale watching tour is one of the few things that I think is a must-do in Boston. The tour takes people into a part of the ocean called the Stellwagen Bank Marine Sanctuary, which is a place where whales go to feed. The captain of the boat tries to get as close to the whales as possible, so you get to see them breach the surface and flip their tails around. I also really like how they respect the whales and try to educate people about what they can do to ensure that the continued survival of the whale population.
We also went apple picking at Parlee Farms with a few of my friends. It’s one of the many farms located just 1 hour’s drive from Boston. I really liked the variety of apples and other produce that they grow there. October is considered apple and pumpkin season, so people drive out with their families to pick out pumpkins for carving and apples for munching!
New York City soon?
I’m aiming to hit up NYC at the end of the year, after my finals on 20th December. We’re only a few hours away by train, so we definitely want to drop by to check out the city. I’d love off-beat recommendations for places to visit and eat, so leave a comment or start dropping me those recommendations via email!
Until next time,