It could be Saturday and I am walking home and I have just enjoyed and then expended the satisfaction of completing some mundane task such as returning a Zip Car and I will start to daydream about living in a large city.
I think about living in New York and walking, in the Fall, around the shin-high metal fences, between the brownstones, navigating the garbage on the sidewalks in The Village.
I think about Prague and the mild but always present acrid smell of burning peet which gets much stronger when the days get short.
I think about Tokyo and the requirement of contact. Brushing the coat back of every person along the bar just slightly as I shuffle between them and the wall on my way to that lonely stool at the very end.
What would it feel like to live in those huge cities? Would I feel different. Would the city change me? “It would be filled with strangers for one”, I think to myself, “and that would be unsettling.” Because of the proximity you can’t help but get some of their lives on you. Hundreds of lives everyday and I never know where they go after they were just in front of me in line.
And then of course I realize that I am in a city and I do live here. I am coated in the dust of hundreds of people everyday. Each night there are about a dozen people sleeping within 20 feet of me but who I don’t know and mostly have never seen.
So it is wonderous that it is possible to forget so often that I am in a city. Why is that? “It’s really just a small town”, we tell each other.
I spend all of my time zoomed in. I am sure that this is nothing unique to San Francisco or probably anywhere. If we didn’t develop a healthy myopia we would all go insane.
Read more stories like this one: JohnMcAlester.com
An invitation to be in the moment
This morning we decided on a spontaneous trip to Baker Beach with our two-year-old son.
Our city by the bay is done with Summer. That summertime fog that we wake up to is no more.
Homeward bound after a month in the USA
One day-One Hour- One Minute- It will happen. It is inevitable. Except it already has.
Top 10 Things To Do In San Francisco
If you live in San Francisco, you know to avoid Eddy and Leavenworth Street... *stab*
Wrote this the day after the attacks in Paris but was reminded of it this morning when I read the news about the bombing in Turkey
In Search of Color