Boston under lockdown

Boston under lockdown

It’s really eerie here in Boston.

Since the older terrorist in the Boston Marathon bombing was killed in the small hours of the night and his younger brother went on the loose and is now the subject of a city-wide search, Boston has been on lockdown.  All forms of public transportation have been shut down, including the “T” (the Boston trains and buses) and Amtrak, businesses are closed, and people have been told to stay indoors.

Katie, my 18-year-old daughter, and I were in Western Massachusetts for the past 24 hours, attending an Open House at a college to which she was accepted when the two suspects were located and the older one killed.  Hearing about Boston being on lockdown this morning was just surreal.  We had planned to spend the entire day at the college, but instead we headed out almost immediately.  When we arrived back home, there were lots of hugs from my mother and my 10-year-old daughter.

When we left Boston yesterday for our trip, we drove through Watertown, where the shoot-out took place.  It is now closed off, so we had to take a route to the south of Boston, rather than driving in directly from the west.

The Massachusetts turnpike (the "Mass Pike") near where the Marathon started on Monday morning.

On the Massachusetts turnpike (the “Mass Pike”, also known as I90) near where the Marathon started on Monday morning.

In Hopkinton, the town where the Marathon started 26.2 miles from the finish line in downtown Boston, there was virtually no traffic going into Boston.

There was even less traffic on Route 9, the major  thoroughfare to our part of town and to downtown Boston. Traffic is always fierce on Route 9, but not today.

No traffic is coming out of Boston.  Everything is shut down.

No traffic is coming out of Boston. Everything is shut down.

Yesterday morning, right before we left for the college’s open house, Katie went to the Church of the Holy Cross where the memorial service for the victims of the Boston Marathon bomb explosions was taking place.  She was hoping to get into the church and see President Obama speak not only as Commander-in-Chief but in his new role as “Comforter-in-Chief.”

She was number 1,050 in line, but unfortunately they only let in the first 1,000 people.  While she was waiting, she took this photo which captures four major aspects of the past three days:

1.  The Boston police who worked selflessly to protect the city.  Here they are protecting people attending the memorial service.

2.  The medical personnel from Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in the van who, along with doctors and nurses at Children’s Hospital, Brigham and Women’s, Boston Medical Center, and Massachusetts General Hospital, helped save the lives of countless people.

3.  The American flag at half-mast

4.  The Prudential Center, Boston’s second tallest building, which was a block or two away from the Marathon finish line.

copyright Katie

Photo taken by Katie.

She missed seeing President Obama speak in person, but those of us in Boston or involved in the Marathon have his words of comfort to listen to as many times as we need to hear them.