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Software entrepreneur explains why he's shipping back up to Boston

Last March, as everything went to hell, Joe Kinsella moved to Orleans. He reports he enjoyed his time on the Nauset Estuary, but that he can't stay away from his adopted home in the Hub. There's a value to in-person work spaces and impromptu whiteboard sessions that he's just not finding in the online-only life. Also:

Over my years in the industry, I have traveled across the world and found many beautiful cities - e.g. London, Paris, Sydney, Singapore, Venice. But none quite compare to Boston for me. The walkable city, the diverse mix of industries, the food scene, the culture, and the mix of modern architecture with Old World charm, all combine to make it a city like few others. I know I could choose to work anywhere in the world these days. I choose Boston.

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I spoke to a realtor in Petersham, MA -- a very pretty, very rural town near the Quabbin which is wealthy and somewhat exclusive. She explained that most of her business was the well-to-do in Boston looking to relocate to the country. After a 3-5 years they decided they didn't like being in the sticks and wanted to sell and move to someplace closer to people. She made her money on them coming and going.

With all the talk of people leaving cities, people are going to find the rural areas aren't as dreamy as they imaged. Houses are cheaper but it's harder to find contractors to work on them. Going to the supermarket is a 30 minute drive. Friends don't want to come over since it's a full day trip.

As always, the rich suburbs (Newton, Concord, etc) do the best.

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The problem with Petersham is that your nearest towns are Athol, Gardner and Orange. I bet people who move to say Conway or Leverett are more likely to stick as they have easy access to Northampton, Amherst, and the rest of the valley. Of course you'll pay a lot more for a house I think?

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If your not worried about schools, Millis, Upton, Harvard, Halifax, Berkeley, etc are all gonna have some nice “rural” areas with mice houses in good price ranges..

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But I sure do need engineers and a head of software engineering ...

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head of software engineering

If not CTO, what are we talkin' here, SVP, VP, Director?

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Head reports VP who reports to CTO... start up

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When he refers to getting back 2 hours of commuting time when he worked from home, I suspect he works in Boston but lives in an outlying leafy suburb like Lincoln?

Edit- looks like he lives in Reading.

Not to dismiss his passion for returning to in person work but it's a bit funny to talk about returning to Boston when he's not? I thought my man was moving back to the South End or something vs. trading a rural life for a suburban one.

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This is why the prices in places like Arlington and Medford continue to surge - compromise between being near the city and having some space.

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He probably drives into Boston for work too.

The type who ruins the city they profess to love.

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I'm not sure why it matters to the conversation but I'll take the bait. I used to live in Reading but sold the house this September since we were never using it. We are moving into Boston (02108). Does that make me legit now? ;)

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It does, Mx. fancy-pants.

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You are, he didn't. You didn't write a very pleased article about leaving your beach house for your suburban McMansion, etc...

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A Reading man went on a tourist tour of some world capitals, and now wants to get back to the Boston "food scene." Is this the Onion?

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A rich guy from the suburbs writing about life 'in Boston' - that's their whole thing!

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Spent three months last summer working remotely in Maine. It was nice and I would think about moving there. But it was an adjustment to have to drive 20- 30 minutes for Dunkin or to go to the supermarket. Could see how some would find that off putting after living in the city or near suburbs for most of their lives.
BTW probably doing it again this summer !

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They have coffee makers in the country too.
Some parts of Boston are more than 20 minutes from a supermarket. People deal as well they can.

Some who live in Boston or the suburbs can go anywhere but are just never satisfied or grateful for what they have that others do not. At some point all the convenience on earth won’t solve your problems.

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well I live in the city and its less that 5 minutes walking to 2 Dunkin Donuts.
I guess it didn't come through that I am happy that I can get a pizza or got to a store and it doesn't take a 30 minute car ride. i an very grateful that with high speed internet I can work form home here or there. And yes after a few days i had to go get Dunkin. Makes a jerk I guess.

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Some things, like grocery stores, are more accessible in the suburbs -- and hey, there's a Starbucks and a Thai restaurant in the same strip mall, so that's all they need I guess?

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Some things, like grocery stores, are more accessible in the suburbs

I think that really depends on the suburb and the part of the city you are in.

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It might be a bit easier to get to a Stop&Shop or a Whole Foods in the suburbs, but possibly much harder to get to an Indian grocery or a specialty foods place depending on where you are.

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...there's Shiva's Super Bazaar, H-Mart, Patel's...

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I'm an avowed city girl myself. But I am SOOOOOOOO done with winter. I'm hoping to remove my remote self to Florida sometime in the next couple of years. Still, it'll be a densely populated, and largely blue, part of the state of course.

But Boston will always be where I'm from, and UHub will always be closest to my heart!

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Florida is going underwater and getting redder by the year - not to mention hotter.

Georgia, the Carolinas, etc. might be good alternatives.

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