Monday, August 01, 2005

I was feeling agitated tonight so I took a walk.

I wasn't agitated at anyone, but because of well, impending feminine reasons. I could feel myself start to stew, and pace, so I took my mace and keys and went out. It was later than my usual walks, or in this case stroll. But, I was restless and needed space.

I looked inside many rowhouses as I passed, one with built in bookshelves from floor to 12-foot high ceiling on each side of the richly decorated living room, completely filled with books. The sound of a man's voice directed my eyes toward the warm glow of their open windows and I saw a couple in their later years, sitting in wing-backed chairs reading and sometimes conversing. It was a vignette into their long lived lives together, one of complete comfort and cohesiveness in each other's presence. They weren't aware of their observer passing by in the dark, just outside their window at a little more than arm's reach.

I passed people with dogs, walked by parks, under over hanging branches and stepped clumsily over brick sidewalks that had lost their mortar. Finally, my ankles at too much risk, I took to the middle of the street and walked under the amber glow of the street lights. Sounds filtered out from windows, reaching at me and dancing visually in my head. Voices, televisions, music, air conditioners, doors closing and opening, laughter, and even silence.

I walked on.

On the back end of the walk I stopped by a rowhouse that has a yard and back stoop. I've made friends with an old cat who lives there and as I approached he was waiting almost expectantly for me. My agitation had turned into a hollowness, and filled just a bit when the bony old guy meowed at me. I stopped by the stoop, and he stood, head-butted my thigh and cozied up for some good old head scratching from the friendly stranger. He meowed in contentment, his voice sounding like a creaky door. I sat on the curb and he hopped off the stoop, pushed under my arm, meow, scratch, head butt. Repeat as desired. After a bit I left my old furry friend, and he followed me like he always does, until he gets to the second door past his house then turns back around.

I stopped by another house with cats, these two sit high on a brick wall and lower their heads for scratching. I passed the bird house with colorful birds in cages chirping by the open windows, then the church with the Tiffany windows, then rounded the corner and pet Joe, a handsome Boston Terrier. I was surprised at the amount of life going on. Pleasantly surprised.

By the time I stuck my key in the door and walked into my apartment, I noticed that my agitation and hollowness had drifted into the night.

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