The internet has too many edits nowadays. Folks editing their content, their words, debates over the right to be forgotten. This was typed entirely horizontally, in bed, no edits save for the part where I seemed to have typed the the consecutively, but I think it was Autocorrect in action. At 3 am, few things matter. 12 days later, here is in it’s full, raw glory. Pic credit to the owner (I did not draw the featured image because this piece is all about the words).
17 June 2014
3:47am -4:20am. Unabridged (for the most part)
I loved Times Square. The hustle and bustle. sitting anonymous amongst tourists trying to superimpose their faces just right onto the interactive ads behind the red steps that were a ceiling for the TKTS booth.
Where people found solace in the greenery of Central Park or the abandoned rooftops of the city visible only to those who dwelled in skyscrapers- all of it potential space for some fabulous rooftop gardens and bars. All of it mostly unused space except for the lesser known rooftop farms I had only read about,but had no chance to explore. No time to explore. You tend to take things in your backyard for granted.
I found solace in the iconic center of Midtown Manhattan where the all the Subways lines converge. Looking at the history of the city, it is also where a lot of the power is concentrated.
And yet I loved the City with a passion that I miss.
Perhaps the hugest draw was the fact that the city was a giant magnet for the dreamers, the materialists, the artists, the corporate lemmings, the transient international transplants (including Yours Truly), and the even more transient tourists.
#gridlock happens very year starting late November all through December when the world and their families descend upon midtown manhattan. It starts with the buses full of school children on school trips, to the couples traveling and their families with grandma in tow, here to revel in the magic of fifth avenue transforming into a glorious display of windows and vying for your mindshare.
Electricity courses through the air in New York. The energy is contagious, recharging and draining all at once. Many love the city; but the city is at best indifferent to most. It doesn’t care.
Resilience and grit drives many, and it shows on their faces. You see glimpses of stories in peoples’ eyes, age old soulfulness; occasionally captured on pages like HONY. (humans of New York). You see it in the way the city bounces back from natural disasters, daily security threats. Three words : East Coast Winters.
These are the prices you pay for living in corporate America where gleaming skyscrapers and a concentration of wealth and power paint a giant bulls eye over the city for humans, aliens, ( the city has been destroyed countless times in movies). I’m pretty sure there is a 3D model of Manhattan online ready to go through the process of utter annihilation and smoke on the second screen. That, and the absolutely ridiculous taxes you shell out to live, work, breathe the air in Manhattan.
What a complex, moving, dynamic ecosystem. What a ride.
I carry all of these in my heart and soul. Faintly pulsing, awaiting for the chance when I would have to draw on those reserves.
I have been waiting, for what you can say is a very long time. And yet, I have no right to this statement when many before me have been around for longer than I have been waiting. I have so much more to learn for everyone around.
Anticipation is a restlessness that not many understand first hand. Infectious enthusiasm is a fuel that few were built to run on.
And so, I keep searching. Occasionally stopping to rest. It’s become something of a dull ache, for the most part buried until it accumulates and manifests into a full blown white hot mess of desire, unlocked by the gradual easing into the night, or lengthy conversations spliced with moments of thoughtful, pregnant and yet comfortable silence.
Scanning the horizon, it’s always important to carry a pint of hope and faith. On Faith, you only need the equivalent of a mustard seed.