My Marathon Monday 2013

Found this while I was sorting out some journals. This was what it was like being a freshman in a college dorm when the Boston Marathon Bombing happened in 2013.

On Marathon Monday, I got up at 7:30 am. Normally this is the time college kids would get up too, so they can pre-game and get drunk.

Meanwhile, I was dressing up nice to get on the MBTA and head to the Museum of Science to volunteer today. I usually do it on Saturday afternoons, never have done mornings which are 9am – 1pm, but I had a Multivariable exam to study for, so I just wanted to get this volunteering thing out of the way.

The streets and sidewalks were completely empty, those streets being the ones that in a couple of hours, would be filled with runners and cheering onlookers on the sidewalks. At Kenmore Square (only place where breakfast places were open), Red Sox fans and ticket sellers were lively and crowding to Fenway Park for the traditional Patriots’ Day baseball game.

At the Museum of Science, we were pretty much anticipating less of a crowd because of the marathon AND the game today. At the briefing, we had a joint meeting and played interview bingo, and talked about the marathon, in which consisted of waves of elite runners and the ‘common’ runners. Everyone was really joyful. When my shift was done, I went back on the train.

Copley square was closed because of the marathon, but I looked at the station when we passed, just out of curiosity. It was completely dark. For a second I kind of contemplated working at the Boston Public Library on Boylston street, since MyMathLab was online. But I wanted my Lays chips and my roommate was off at the medical tent in the finish line volunteering at the marathon, so she was gonna be back at 7 pm.

I had my dorm room all to myself till then.

I got off the train at Arlington and went on the C I anticipated, I smelled the alcohol and it was crowded. I had planned to go to Kenmore so I could watch the runners and Instagram some of the race, instead of taking the B train and getting off at Warren.

It was an exciting view and all the crowds of people were cheering loudly especially for the runners who, at the last mile, were raising their arms and smiling at the crowd, edging them on. It was a happy gathering. I was staring at the race so intently that I even forgot to cross the street and went on the other side to Beacon Street. I turned back and watched some more.

Then I walked along Commonwealth, where it got much quieter, to go back to my dorm. I saw my fellow volunteer at the Museum, who had said she would visit BU today. She took the B line but she saw a girl throw up in front of her. “Not the best time to visit BU haha” I said.

I went back to my room and started to work on math. I was craving chocolate and started making videos of me eating chocolate… During that time, I heard so many police and ambulances. I figured the police were arresting drunk college kids and the ambulances were for the runners who couldn’t take the 26 miles. Then it got a little worse, and it was strange. I heard some strange stuff kind of in the middle of all the sirens there was a loud boom, followed by more and more sirens. I thought the ambulance must have ridden over a pot hole or something.

Then I went on Facebook and my friend updated his status “What happened at Copley? Hope everyone is safe!” No comments below, just some status. I researched a little, went on twitter. I saw that there was an explosion. I started getting a little worried….. not really because you know Boston, I figured it was some accident like the exploding washing machine or something similar like what happened in Scituate.

My friend Melody first fb messaged me “where are you?!” I told her I was in the dorm. then came all the messages of “Are you ok?” and “You weren’t at the marathon right?”. It got scary when I saw a Twitter post about some terrorist attack. I immediately got a hold of my friends who were volunteering at the finish line.

At this point, I expected no one to be hurt, I was just curious if my friends witnessed all the smoke from the explosion, that it was not near anyone.

They responded.

I got a few more texts and realized I should stay with others at this time. It was getting scary.

I headed over to another floor mate’s room and she hugged me tight.

We all sat together, accounting for everyone else on the floor.

I finally texted my roommate.

My parents, who were trying to call me, FaceTimed me but it didn’t work. They were probably freaking out. I texted them “I’m alive” and told them where I was.

My mom responded “Thank god”. MY mom. Never heard her say that. It was the first time she ever remotely expressed how much she loved me and missed me. My dad also face timed me, he was not so worried, I made the conversation light, pretending everything was okay, and that his call was a little off guard.. you know just a bomb. He was at work. My friends are on their way back and I am going to visit them.

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