Monday, July 30, 2007
7.7 miles and 2.5 hours later, we arrive at our doorstep, exhausted, blistered and bursting with a new found love for this city.
your car breaks down in the middle of your day, not part of the plan. you go through your list of friends, no one answers. you are left at 109 n. naomi with an idea of the general direction home. it can't be that far. you start walking. worlds unfold along the way. you encounter humans and hold conversations that would never have taken place had the car started.
an exuberant estate salesman points the way. a fat woman watering her lush garden stares at us in disbelief and then exclaims through the thickness of her jersey speak - "yuh walkin to wheya?" it's as if we had asked her how to get to calcutta. any distance on foot seems unbelievable to the dwellers of this city. we battle cars for most of the journey.
we continue in the direction we are headed. somehow we are now in a small town within a city. sun-bleached businesses speak more to forgotten towns in new mexico than to the metropolis they are hidden in. the trail becomes littered with horse shit. stables are stuck in between apartment complexes and homes transported from kentucky. there is a blond girl riding a big white horse. she is talking on her cell phone. behind a white picket fence a gray-haired man sits reading lengthy literature on his lengthy porch.
where are we?
his wife comes out and points the way.
we walk through secret parks and stumble on rotten leaves and cigarette butts. we cross a river, and a river of cars. one travels slowly, the other whizzes by. our feet start to get dirty. there are brown bunnies and deer grazing and joggers jogging and bongos banging and baby butt cracks and native americans meeting and too many tourist to count and golfers and golf balls and golf carts and buddhist in burgundy gowns and toddlers rolling around and skunks striking poses and lovers kissing on benches.
a grown man rides by on his daughters hot pink bike. it is too small for him and his knees splay out to the sides. I am so very happy. I don't mind the hill or the heat or the blisters. I am a hero walking with my hero and this is one of our many adventures. a romance in the truest sense of the word.