Marathon Monday, 2013, is a day that Bostonians and New Englanders won’t ever forget. Nor should they. On a day that is considered uniquely Boston, one where thousands and thousands of people come together in celebration, festivities were forever blackened by a senseless, sickening, and utterly unprovoked act. And yet, everywhere you look, in the face of cowardice, emerge acts of extreme bravery and courage. Firemen and police officers tearing down barriers, race-weary runners lending whatever hand they could, and homes opening to strangers with no other place to turn. Every time one of these things tries to tear us apart, folks come together like never before. Boston is Strong.
The very act of terrorism is to strike fear into people and disrupt daily life. For obvious reasons, Monday and Tuesday’s Bruins and Celtics games were cancelled. The city, ever so dependent on it’s sports teams for consolation, lay in a proverbial blackout for 24 hours. No sports. No solace. Just media coverage. The Red Sox, fresh off their early morning victory, wouldn’t play until Tuesday evening in Cleveland. While they provided a much needed boost for many, the road victory was a good start, but not that “up-yours” distraction we needed.
Tonight, Boston takes a breather when, for 2 and a half hours, the Bruins battle the Buffalo Sabres on Garden ice. It will be the first sporting event, and perhaps the first major event in the city since Monday’s bombings. Fans will be edgy and vigilant, but moreover, with a national audience tuning in, boisterous. Tonight, with Bruins players already vowing to “play their hearts out”, 17, 565 Bostonians will scream, cheer, chant and mostly tell the world “we’re ok”.
We should never forget the events that happened that day. Just like any tragedy in our history, they should be remembered, honoring those who lost, those who stepped up, and those who sacrificed. But for a few hours this evening, it’s ok to take a breather. It’s ok to feel normal. And most importantly, it’s ok to come back strong tomorrow. Boston is Strong.