My friend Leslie and I met for lunch as we often do on Saturday afternoons. We went to my favorite organic food restaurant, the one where my daughter worked as a hostess last summer, and I had my usual delicious bowl of butternut squash soup.
We sat is a glass corner, so the people-watching was spectacular as New Yorkers trundled by, huddled against the bitter cold. My friend had just entreated her son to button up his coat; this was just before she met up with me. So when a man walked by outside the restaurant in just sweater sleeves, she noted wryly that he could be friends with her son. Except this man was very unsteady on his feet, his hair in ill-groomed spikes, his eyes dazed and piercing at the same time. I held my breath as he stumbled across Amsterdam Avenue, oblivious to the cars swerving around him.
He went into a Mom and Pop grocery store, and moments later he emerged, crossing the street again in that stumbling, unseeing way. Back on the sidewalk just outside from where we were sitting, he tossed an ice cream bar wrapper toward the trash can. He missed, but didn't notice. Right then a young woman who looked like a college kid, stepped onto the sidewalk and in one fluid motion she picked up his wrapper and deposited it where he'd intended. Our eyes met, I gave her a thumbs up, we smiled at each other broadly and she went on her way. It felt like such a New York moment, or maybe just a human moment facilitated by the shoulder-to-shoulder living we do in the city.
Leslie and I had planned on seeing Dallas Buyers Club, but it was playing all the way downtown, and it was almost 5 p.m. by then, the witching hour when cabs change shifts and there are none to be found. As it was only getting colder and I wasn't feeling the train, we decided to just go home and regroup for the movie tomorrow. I arrived home as dusk was falling over the empty courtyard, the snow still packed in ridges after a string of 28-degree days. As I entered the heated lobby of our apartment building, I felt ridiculously happy to be so close to my bed. I dreamed of climbing in and getting warm under the covers.
Even the playground outside our window was devoid of all activity, the snow untouched. My husband and son were both home, my son asleep after a night out with friends last evening, my husband lying on the bed surfing on his laptop, and I greeted him gratefully, hung up my coat, kicked off my boots, and climbed into bed beside him. I read and napped, played a few levels of Candy Crush (so addictive), and woke up and read some more. Four hours later, I have just emerged. My son is awake and we are all watching couples figure skating soon to be followed by slope style snowboarding in Sochi.
I found this sweet photo of my daughter and one of her best friends since first grade on Facebook. These young ladies, both Aries, are the daughters of the Taurus mothers from last Sunday's post, and we could not be happier at the simplicity and longevity of their friendship, which continues to deepen now that they are at the same college.
All in all, I think I have successfully managed to stay in the moments of this day, resting in each one peaceably. I guess this is what is meant by being fully present in my life, at ease with what is.