Back in 2014, in a move that delighted reporters, bloggers and railfans alike, Amtrak started to offer free traveling residencies to writers. I’ll admit to the temptation to apply. I, too, love what writer Jessica Gross, on Amtrak’s “trial run” for the program, described as the “sense of safety, borne of boundaries” that comes from train travel, finding myself calmed by the erasure of uncertainty.
What to make of boundaries? Read any advice column and you’ll learn that boundaries are set to wall us off from the intrusions of others. Healthy relationships require you to respect your own boundaries, they write, and those of others.
But boundaries are more than ramparts for our hearts. They can also connect us and, in the case of a recent community engagement program, allow us to serve others.