Place Where You Live:

Woburn, Massachusetts

Views From Horn Pond

If you have seen the 1998 film A Civil Action with John Travolta, then you probably know about my hometown, Woburn Massachusetts. Although most people have heard of this little city in the context of polluted water or lawsuits, I see my home through a different perspective. One of my favorite places to go in town is Horn Pond; the granite face of this over-glorified hill peers over bustling Woburn center. From here, you can see the vibrant green nature preserve with its crystal blue pond, named for its bull horn-like shape, surrounded on all sides by the busy network of suburban homes and blue collar workers. What I love most about this Horn Pond Mountain is that from the very peak, you can view the soaring skyscrapers of Boston just 12 miles away. With such a metropolis so close to home, it is easy to get caught up in the rapid pace of city life. For this reason, Horn Pond is a natural sanctuary, not only to the swans, ducks, frogs, squirrels, and other wildlife that inhabit it, but also for the people nearby. As a child, I grew up taking regular walks or bike rides around the pond. However, I did not notice the sharp contrast to the inner-city landscape until I went to a high school in Malden, which is even closer to Boston and contains almost no wildlife. By walking through the back trails that snake throughout the preserve, I gain respect for the proud Aberginian Indians that once called this place their home. Their original name for the Horn Pond area was Innitou, and they believed that it rose up from the sea during creation. Under the welcoming canopy of the trees, a wanderer could not see signs of human construction and it almost feels like a trip back in time. To some, this small spot of green in an ocean of concrete and metal may seem an unlikely juxtaposition; but to me, it maintains an almost instinctive connection to nature, as well as a delightful landmark of my childhood.