Dorchester is the biggest neighborhood in Boston, both in area and population, but many Bostonians haven't been there. Those that do venture along the Red Line past Andrew Station get bitten by the Dorchester bug. Like a chigger, Dorchester gets under your skin. Like a tick, Dorchester, bloated on the nourishing blood of its citizens, spreads a contagion. It isn't Lyme Disease, it's Dot-itis.
There are a fair share of fair weather Dorchesterites. They disembark at Savin Hill in the summer months to spend an afternoon frolicking in the sun and on the sugar sand shores of Malibu Beach. October winnows out these migrations and November leaves only the dedicated. People who were born in Dorchester know its charm and transplants know it equally well. A North Ender, a Back Bayer, a Cantabrigian... they are few and far between in Peabody Square or Codman Square or Lower Mills after the first of December.
Some people live in Dorchester, and they are the luckiest of all Bostonians. Some people only come for a visit that is always too brief. The wind off Dorchester Bay in winter can seem bitter, but many people find it briskly refreshing. Dorchesterites deep in the throes of Dot-itis have a spring in their step and a glint in their eyes that prove they are among the committed. You can't keep a good neighborhood down and you can't get away from the Dot once you've been in it. It changes a person.