The Streets Are Alive
I’ve pushed myself further still. I got to this street yesterday evening which seemed just a step too far, or, should I say, a street too far? I’ve come to feel that streets have personalities. They have moods. This is a neighborhood built in the 1970s; these streets are not empty sanitized shells from a common mold; they have life. Every house is it’s own person.
Some streets are bright, cheerful, open like that woman you just met who tells you everything about her last relationship, what she thinks of your friends, and the outcome of her last pap smear.
Some streets are cloistered and curvy. You’ve got to round each corner to discover what it holds. You just can’t know until you get there. These roads have large old trees and cars, so many cars, parked along the edges. They are casted always in shadows. It’s enveloping and secretive like that friend with whom you’ve shared years of acquaintance but, in truth, know very little about. It’s going to take a while.
So there’s this street that scares me. It’s way down at the end of a long drive and I don’t know where it may lead. A part of me would like to go flying into that street with hawk-like determination, knocking Fear off his thick legs and send him flying backwards into the grass. He’ll look over at me blazing down the street and shrug his shoulders in acceptance. She’s gone. I missed her. There’s the other option, of course. I can look at a map, see where it leads and then head in, prepared and adult-like. Would that even count as accomplishment if I prepare myself?
I see a car full of teenage boys run straight through a stop sign. It was another group of teenage boys who slammed into my brother and his girlfriend a few months back. How is it that people can be so careless with their lives, and for what?
I see garages so stuffed full of things that a single pencil couldn’t fit inside, and I wonder if this is a strictly American phenomenon.
I smile and wave to every neighbor that I see sitting on their porch or walking down the street or raking their lawn. I’ve seen a lot of people, and I’ve narrowed them down to two types.
Type one sees my smile and immediately beams one in return. It doesn’t matter how stern or groggy they appeared before. They see the smile and they light up. To be frank, they appear a bit more human to me after that. I’m starting see people repeatedly. My sense of community is growing, as well as my definition of what my neighborhood is. Anyhow…
The second type stands there staring, just the casing of a human. I pass smiling, and they stand staring. It seems as if they are trying to figure out what it could possibly mean. It’s like they’re trying to understand the why of it. Why is she smiling at me in greeting? What’s going on here? Sometimes I nod my head a second time, just to make sure that they understand This is saying hello, but nothing. They barely blink. I always get the feeling that they are from some other planet and they just gave themselves away. They haven’t been taught a human fundamental: Smile when someone smiles at you. Or, at least acknowledge that something is registering in your mind. Maybe these aliens are incapable.
I said there are two types of people, but really there’re three. A whole other category is reserved for the men, young and old, who are only concerned with sizing me up and down completely and in all earnestness. There’s no smile, no acknowledgement of my humanity. All he cares about is Let me scan as much of her body as I possibly can before she passes.
We had a beautiful sky. It’s one of those Renaissance style skies with the clouds deep and bright; and there is always the crack in the clouds where the rains down streaks of sunshine onto a green and sprawling landscape. They always indicate that the world is beautiful and there’s divinity pouring down on us all. At least that’s what I think of when I think Renaissance landscapes.
That’s it for now. I’ve been steadily increasing my time at intervals. I’m doing about 30 minutes of riding in the morning first thing after 2 glasses of water. Then in the evening, at whatever time I feel like it before the sun goes down, I do another 30 minutes. My legs are getting a lot more to what they used to be. They feel stronger when I walk and firmer to the touch. Also, I’ve been trying motivational videos instead of only music for my rides. It feels good to get a constant stream of positivity to push me along to go a little longer. And, of course, it’s quite motivational and helping me to spend more time concentrating on working on my personal growth. I recommend you try it. I don’t think I’d do it for the gym, but to each his own. It’s all ideas and maybe worth a shot.
Now I’m really done. Don’t forget to look around at our fascinating world!