I just did something I never do. I went for a walk without wearing lipstick or carrying a purse.
After finishing off and cleaning up after a meal of whole wheat pasta with garlic, hot pepper flakes and oil and tossed with fresh Jersey tomatoes, mozzarella and basil, I went down to take out the trash with just my keys (fully clothed, you cheeky monkeys!) Feeling the first coolish breeze since last week and having been cooped up all day with still no work and feeling useless, I decided to take a walk. Just around the block, on the residential side, I thought. But after 2 blocks, I'd walked 10, then circled back up another avenue, the long way to head home, but detoured on a pretty 3-block "place street" and by then had gone about 20. It felt good to move and feel the air move with me.
Along the way, guess what, no one cared about my lack of dolled up-ed-ness, no one needed my money and I certainly had no urge to make or receive a call or text. I passed dogwalkers and smokers, last minute grocery shoppers on their way home. Couples. Couples hand in hand, couples arguing, couples walking together but apart. The ubiquitous stroller and anxious toddlers, of course. People in lycra en route to and from the gym. An old man with a cane calling up to someone I couldn't see, inside his house.
There was a hipster on a stoop. Alone. No headphone or cellphone, just staring into the street. Thinking. And from his face, it seemed like more than just contemplation of which ironic bowling shirt, skinny jeans and fedora to wear tomorrow. It made me wonder what other town he'd come from. Maybe I have it wrong and his family lives in the brownstone upstairs.
I mistakenly walked too far on the street before mine and had to circle back on the bustle of Court St., past the new restaurant on the corner. All I can ever smell from there is ketchup. Yet it's alway busy, while the French place down the block that I know has good food, service and wonderful smells was empty as always.
Today, during the day, as yet another week of unemployment set in, I wondered if I should just cut my losses and move someplace where my rent money is more valuable. Tonight I learned I'm just not ready for another place to empty my trash on a breezy August night.