“I should’ve been there last night.”
I kept repeating those words to myself last night and today. For the first time in 6 years, I wouldn’t be at the Garden watching the home opener in person. It was a tough feeling to swallow.
First, let me preface this with a bit of a background. Grew up in Massachusetts, went to school in Boston and remained in the area after graduating by setting up show shop in Somerville. Since college, I had gotten those mini-packs for the tickets. I finally was able to afford a full season ticket package following the dreadful ’06-07 campaign. I bought seasons with the anticipation of grabbing either Greg Oden or Kevin Durant in the ’07 NBA Draft. We all know what happened after that. Anyways, two seasons and one NBA Championship later, I found myself coming out of graduate school with my Masters degree but no job. I had went back to school full-time in hopes of advancing my career. However, no one told me that the economy was going to tank and the job market was going to get hit hard. I have toyed with the idea of relocation for some time now. It was always going to be Chicago, though. I decided to pull the trigger and give it a shot. One problem; I still own season tickets for the Celtics. Couldn’t give them up. No way. I still have it in my mind that I’ll be back in Boston, soon enough. I just have to get this relocation bug out of my system. So what I’ve done this season is take on my father as a partner as well as some friends and distributed the tickets. I still have final call on who gets what and when I am back at home, I’ll be back at the Garden.
So, I went online yesterday morning and hit up the usual websites; Celticsblog, Boston.com, the Herald, Bostonsportsmedia.com, etc… and all I find is “Home Opening Night is Finally Here!!!” and that’s when it hit me “Damn, I’m not going to be there.” Quite the wave of emotion gets over you. When you root for a team so hard for so many years, you grow an attachment to them. Living in the Boston area, I took for granted all the Celtics coverage and the ease to immerse yourself with the team. Now, living in Chicago, I realized no one out here shared my excitement. No one here cared that the Celtics were playing. You’re unable to get caught up in the grip of excitement among the community. You’re on an island. As a newly relocated individual, this is the first time I’ve had that feeling. Its not easy to take. I was able to record the game on DVR and watched it last night after coming home from a CPA review class I’m taking. Seeing Mike & Tommy was a sight for sore eyes and definitely brought me back to Boston for a few hours. It was like I never left. However, the images and sights and sounds of the crowd last night were definitely bittersweet. I wanted to be there, back in Sec. 311 with all the regulars, free t-shirt and all, yelling and screaming.
I’m sure that I’ll slowly grow accustomed to being out here and with the passing of more home games, my frustration of being so far away from the Celtics will subside a bit. I already got tickets for the Bulls-Celtics game out here in December and I’ll be back at the Garden during Thanksgiving time to catch a game or two. Anyways, just thought I’d share my experience as a newly relocated Celtics fan. Still, I keep repeating those words “I should’ve been there last night!”….