30DHN: Three Years Ago Today

November 11, 2009

I wake up early in my house in Forest Hills, Queens.  Turn on the TV to NY Nonstop to get the weather forecast for the day.  Take a slow, leisurely bath in the bathroom with hideous peeling wallpaper and plastic shower curtains taped to the tile walls to prevent them from crumbling.  Into the kitchen with the chipped-up floor to the mailbox-sized fridge, I pull out a can of V8 and shake vigorously.  I spread banana, peanut butter, and honey onto a burrito and roll it up.  This I eat in front of the TV on the futon, whose gentle slope to the floor also suggest dilapidation and decay.  I carefully draw a cat-eye in gel eyeliner using the mirror at the top of the stairs, and the cracked wooden windowsill to hold my tools.  I don two pairs of socks, a t-shirt, and a hoodie, along with my comfortable jeans, coat and slip-on shoes and head out the door for work.

I walk past more humble houses, then mansions, then a row of old townhouses that have always reminded me of a castle.  Through the LIRR station, with brick pavement, under the overpass, and into the town.

Source: google.com via Devin on Pinterest

Whenever I walk in Forest Hills, I am reminded of my original assessment, wherein I noticed that there are no buildings higher than two stories.  Save for the high-rise apartment complexes on the north side of Queens Boulevard, the shops are short, squat buildings.  I push open the door to Subway, and the man behind the counter grabs a whole wheat loaf.  He knows my order, though he does not know my name.  We exchange pleasantries while he makes me the sandwich I order and eat every day:  6-inch veggie delite with American cheese, mayo, and everything but the jalapeno and sweet peppers.  I will look forward to eating this sandwich all morning.

Across the once daunting 12-lane Queens Boulevard I rush, into work.  Work!  Answering phones at my desk, fending off cats, filing, and trying with all my might to get the banking for the day accomplished by 5:00, the time the bank closes.  Eight hours later, at 7:00pm,  I will leave for the day.

I walk back through the town after rush hour has passed through.  Already dark.  Peeping into the windows as I pass lit from within by warm, soft lamps.  Families laughing and eating dinner together, cozy living rooms reading by a fireplace.  It’s beautiful.  But it’s not quite right.  Yet.  It’s on track, it’s close, it’s sweet and I can appreciate it in its own right.  But I want more.  I think, if you ever stop wanting more, you may as well quit, right?  And I’m not ready to quit.  Not yet.

So Fawned 30 Days Hath November


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