Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Going home

And now for that part of the day I’ve grown to cherish…the leaving of the office. Today it was special. Today, there was still light in the sky and colors on the horizon. The world is about to be reborn and though it is freezing outside the light is an indication that warmth is not far away.

Now I am typing this on the train on my way home. I’m staring at the colors in the sky, the vestiges of another day I feel I’ve wasted, not because I’ve actually wasted it, but because it didn’t fulfill me. My office is located half a block from Union Station, which is the same number of stops to Columbia Heights no matter what side of the tracks I get on. I usually choose the outside route, the one that makes me feel I am still part of the world after spending an entire day cooped up in an office.  It’s always interesting, no matter how many times I travel it or the time of day or the passengers with me. Sometimes I pretend I’m in Europe, where train travel is normal and graffiti filled walls are a social expression instead of a crime. The train yards near Union Station can feel like we’re pulling into some small town in Anywhere, Europe. But then the crowding and pushing and peddling and begging come into play and I realize I am in a far less desirable place.

Trains are wonderful. There’s a certain practical romance to riding the rails, a testament to man’s creativity in finding solutions to make our lives easier. I laugh at all those commuters riddled with the pangs of traffic, for they’ve made a poor choice. As the internet meme says, they aren’t stuck in traffic – they ARE the traffic.

It’s half price night at the local watering hole. The crowds are bigger these days, bigger and louder and less interesting than they had been before word got out that all drafts are half price. I'll be there soon.

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