12 February 2009

walking home

A rare mild night in February; leaving my friend’s house in Chueca I decided to walk the 30 minutes home. Cold weather sends me running for taxis and subways – especially after 2 a.m. But tonight there was a full moon and it felt good to stretch my legs.

It has been a while since I’ve walked through the heart of this city; normally I avoid these crowded streets. Usually I walk with my head down, dodging people and lost in the music playing through my headphones. But late at night I stick to the main drags and stay alert. No music, head up, listening.

And tonight the streets were empty, eerily calm and shiny. Heels echoing through a vacant Sol and cavernous Plaza Mayor. The minstrel song of a stumbling drunk brushing across the cobblestones, angry garbage trucks devouring bins, the sporadic questions from strangers – directions or spare change – only briefly interrupting the silence.

Do you ever walk through your city and feel like you’re dreaming? Like if you closed your eyes you could lift up and float away?

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