I left NYC nearly a week ago, and the processing of what I saw and learned on this latest visit continues. The streets roil with inspirations for me - it's so hard to slow things down enough to take stock of what I learn there. As a result, it's taking me time to filter through the hundreds of photos and piles of new ideas to incorporate into my story's arc. So goes the business of squishing and squeezing an untidy story into an approachable narrative arc.
But here's a tidbit I hope might be enjoyable as a quick bite. I saw while we were visiting the obit in the NYTimes for a woman who made a documentary about a photograph. Meta enough for you? Most folks will recognize the photo ("Harlem 1958") where a dizzying crowd of jazz greats are captured in their mid-morning glory. The obit listed the address. I diverted my early morning run from the parks (Riverside, Morningside, Central...) up into Harlem to capture a few of that stoop for myself. There were no musicians up at that hour. Only a few friendly trannies further south on 5th Avenue and delivery people on their rounds, tossing things off their trucks. But as I mentioned earlier, it's such rare occasions when the City slowed down and cleared out that I felt like I could see a longer arc than just navigating the crowded block right in front of me traversing Midtown in full bloom. I'm thankful for those morning moments.
Someone recently asked me why I run if there's such a serious risk of injury and all the other overplayed bad news bearing down on such a sporty lifestyle choice. Here's the answer I should have given - because of the chance to see things like this when I know that almost everyone is still getting the sleep we all need. Life's a series of trade-offs. This is what I take away from my choice in that trade. I can live with that.