I recently joined Hollywood Agency as an SAE after booking 4 years of PR in our nation’s capital. DC was an incredibly edifying phase of my life – I found a passion in telling the stories of companies and non-profits through molding their expertise in the media conversation, and somewhere along the way, I met my girlfriend. My early 20s phased into my late 20s, and before I knew it, my girlfriend and I decided to transition to Boston where she could practice public defense in New Hampshire, and I could elevate my PR career to the next level. We also made the wise decision of buying a puppy in the midst of this huge transition, which I wouldn’t recommend to a single person unless they’re looking for sleep deprivation and financial peril.
Upon setting up shop in Charlestown, I was contacted by a PR recruiting firm who wanted to meet with me to discuss a potential fit. Given I knew absolutely no one in Boston, particularly in PR, I knew this was a meeting that I had to take if I had any chance of breaking into the competitive PR landscape in Boston. So, we organized a date and time, and met at the Prudential Center.
“I have a search underway based in Hingham, Massachusetts,” said the recruiter. I looked up the location of Hingham and immediately became skeptical. “Listen,” I said, “I don’t mean to reject this without consideration, but there is no way I could commute to that location.” My mind raced with thoughts: the puppy needs me closer to home; I don’t have a car; commuting is expensive, etc. “I can’t make it work, I’m sorry,” I lamented. We enjoyed the rest of our conversation together and discussed the potential to work together down the road, but I knew her priority was to land someone at Hollywood Agency.
Fast forward two days later, I had been convinced by a friend of a friend at the MBTA that the ferry commute to Hingham was not just amazing; local media had punctuated it, “the best commute in America.” “There’s no traffic, there’s a bar on board, and it’s fast”, this friend said. I quickly pulled up my phone and sent an email to the recruiter, “I changed my mind.”
Now I’m writing to you, the reader, as an employee at Hollywood Agency that the commute is, indeed, the best in America. I’ve resided in a ton of places in my life, and the ferry by far transcends any means of transportation across those cities. San Francisco, New York, DC. It doesn’t even come close, and I’m going to tell you why:
The ferry shows up on time, and it leaves on time.
There is no such thing as traffic that can delay your ferry.
It’s cheaper than driving to and from Boston.
It’s quiet, smooth and weirdly meditative.
It’s a reverse commute to Hingham, so you’re likely the only one on the boat.
It has Wi-Fi, so you can work on board.
Lastly, the ferry, as I mentioned, has a bar on board. You’re well on your way to happy hour before you get back to Boston.
In retrospect, I could not believe I nearly skipped out on such a great opportunity. Not only has this experience provided me a new impression of recruiting, it’s reinforced an important lesson to consider all possibilities before arriving at a consensus. Most importantly, I’ve been provided an extremely fortunate opportunity to work with a small group of creative, passionate and hard-working people who make big things happen for those with a story to tell.
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