Fireflies and other distractions

The view from my window is different.  I’m typically not a fan of change.  So I did not change rooms with an open mind.  But as I stretch out across the bed, in the tiny room, with the air conditioner cooling my feet, I stare out into the space between the buildings.

In the morning, water drips in front of the window from an unknown source upstairs.  At least, I think it’s water.

In the full sun of the afternoon, the downstairs neighbor has taken off his shirt and is doing yard work.  I don’t feel too bad about staring, because his person has a penis.  Guiltless pleasure.

Dusk begins early between the buildings.  Time is deceptive in this city.  A swarm of confused fireflies make their appearance, and I am mesmerized.  The trees look like Christmas… full of twinkly lights… and suddenly I am 8 years old in the backyard of my grandparents house in Pittsburgh, holding a jar with holes poked into the lid.  My grandmother helps me capture a few unlucky lightning bugs to keep next to my bed until morning.  They will join a praying mantis who I’m certain is named Ivan or Savannah.   I head upstairs to a room that belonged to my Dad while he was growing up, complete with a box full of his old toys.  I can still picture the view out of that window.  That was Dad’s view.  Even then, I remembered thinking it was special.

A siren and flashing lights fly down the street past an open living room window, and I am jolted back to the present.  I am laying on my belly, and I shift slightly.  Something is poking me.  It doesn’t take long to discover the sharp point of a Cheez-It that has managed to make its way into my bra and is doing enough damage to leave a mark.  As I remove the shard, it occurs to me that the half-eaten bag I brought back from the airport is still in the kitchen.  I stand up, stretch, and make my way the five and a half steps it takes to get to the kitchen.  I pour a glass of wine and take my snack into the living room to watch the assortment of people walking up and down the street while the light fades to dark.

I assume the fireflies have given up, since there’s really no such thing as black here.  But I appreciate their effort in lieu of stars.

A full day has come and gone.  I tell myself I want to go to bed at a decent hour, but every cell in my body laughs at that, and I know I will listen to the city until 3 am.

I can question my productivity, but I choose not to.

Standing, sitting, walking, drinking, eating, talking, listening, reading and writing.  I am truly in my happy place.


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