The other day, I joined some colleagues from work to help clean up the grounds at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Boston. The hospital’s funding has been cut, so they were delighted to have our help. It was a beautiful spring day, and it was nice to be away from the office.
We planned to treat ourselves to lunch in the neighborhood and we asked the men who supervised our work to be our guests. There were a dozen of us and two of them, both veterans themselves.
At first the conversation was a little slow, but we got into sports and where we grew up—they were born and bred in Boston and only one of us could claim that. They love the Red Sox no matter how bad they are, and they were very proud of their city’s response to the marathon bombings.
Food is a great equalizer, and by the time we parted, we had made new friends. I still smile when I think of their parting words, “We can’t wait to tell our friends that Harvard bought us lunch!”