The fifth season finally ended. For New Yorkers, there are five
seasons: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer, and the Season of Bad Smells and Tempers.
It is usually shorter than the rest, although I find myself imagining a
post-apocalyptic Fifth Season that is constant (no relation to the excellent
book of the same name). After my last post, a friend reminded me of the Fifth
Season in New York. She was right. I would say it lasted about two weeks. Now
we are definitely into fall. I enter the subway with daylight and I exit in
darkness. The weather is cooler, I’m wearing a jacket and boots alternatively
with sleeveless tops and sandals.
The good news. The claims processing gig I’ve been working
on for a month invited me (of its own violation) to continue on their nex
last ating slidesgotten
so engrossed in the work I’d wanted,realizedcame abouttheir 10
es job.w to exotic11-year-old to help her cool off. I swear the air conditioning stops
midday for two hours and it gets stuffy.
down the street
Maybe it could
lead to my next career.
The train I take to work, the 1,
has been speeding past all re- Some of us in the car made “awws” of recognition. A bank type
man caught my eye and gave me a nod. Momentous occasion. and shiny The next
day the train didn’t stop there because of the 9/11 ceremony. The platform was
crowded with MTA workers.
Each evening I went to the
Apparently the car I’d been
riding in had shot past the 44th floor stop.panels,thought on boss’ orders
building was heavily damaged and imagine
The new project is much more interesting than the old one. I
read through the contracts and mine them for information, interpreting what’s
being said. Time goes quicker. Friday morning my Project Manager was telling
another worker how we were selected. We’d been whittled off a list of 30. All
the PMs had gathered names and we were chosen. She pointed out that personality
was part of it, because she said she, and the others, liked everyone on the
final list on some level. I did a little “Aww” voice and gesture (I get from
Sabbi Merz, hand held palm down and flat under chin). The good part is it is
finally relaxed enough that I share bits of my personality and humor. Bad part
is we are now 12 in a room and everyone is talking. I find it very difficult to
read through long docs when there’s a lot of chatter. But I’m not going to make
When I get discouraged, I seek encounters. One day for my 30-minute
mandatory break, I simply sat on the stairs in front of my office and watched
New Yorkers and tourists walk past. Reminding myself why I love it here.
Another day a man and a pit bull were crossing the street just in front of me.
The man led the dog into the crosswalk against the light then realized a bus
was speeding towards them. He stepped back, but the dog was still in front. Not
really in danger, but a little too close. The pit looked at me with his big
grin and I waved him over, just to get him to move back. He came immediately
and licked my hand. So cute. I looked up and the woman next to me was smiling
I love endearments. Ismael, from the deli next door says “Hi
love” when I come in. I still say hi to the Halal food vendor each night when I
see him. Vendors smile and I still keep smiling. Sometimes I need to remind
myself to do it. Sometimes my smile is fake. But it’s there. There’s beauty
everywhere. In the people, in the buildings. The thought that goes into things.
The giant balloon rat someone setup to protest scabs at a union work site. The
effort is beautiful. Like the flowers growing in the tiny fenced patch of
ground in front of the apartment building. Effort is everything.