June 01, 2004

10,000 Actual Tourists

Holiday. Chinese food. People who really like you. People who will run down the sidewalk rather than miss the bus, who go on adventures to walk and play tourist and hunt for striped socks, stop to stare at skunks and feral cats and sea lions. People who will stop and listen to street musicians playing banjos and make small talk between songs. People who end up buying too much saltwater taffy, are willing to use public restrooms, and donít care if youíre cranky after 4 hours in the sun surrounded by 10,000 actual tourists.

Cold wind on your shoulders that isnít quite cold enough to make you wear a sweatshirt. Wind thatís just cold enough and the hot sun that makes you take the sweatshirt off again. The hot sun that warms the sidewalk and filters through your eyelashes. The sun that releases all that vitamin D, ages your skin and creates smile lines. The sun that amplifies a chuckle and turns it into the laughter of summer.

Beer. Neighbors. Friends who walk you home, give you a hug, pat you on the back. The fun time you meant to be having all those other times you thought you were supposed to be having fun. A mutual forgetting of person, place, thing. Wondering where you went off course and realizing thereís no need to worry about it. Ease instead of effort. An exhale instead of a pensive look. Thatís just how it goes.

Will you still have moments where your breath catches and your heart seizes in fear and youíre too scared to keep your eyes open? You will. But the sun and the people and the exhale come again after. And they keep coming.

And thatís life.

Posted by allison at June 1, 2004 04:36 PM

all of this is great and all except i can't bring myself to run for the bus. another one will show up eventually.

Posted by: simon at June 4, 2004 06:16 PM
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