Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The crowd -- friendly, well-behaved -- hampered my progress though Logan Airport.  For compelling reasons hard to articulate now, I was lugging documents under both arms.  These burdens challenged my command of time and space when fishing for wallet, blackberry, whatever.  Yet I brushed aside offers of help.

I was en route to the college from which I had graduated 36 years ago.  The taxi made good time till Memorial Drive in Cambridge, where the engine gave out.  Rather than apologize, the driver thought I should compensate him extra “for the music.” 

He had underestimated me if he thought I was going to pay for what the taxi’s radio had supplied, don’t worry.  Besides, hadn’t I put up for miles with a gyros sweating on the spit in the passenger section?  Assured of the justice of my position, and braced by the opportunity to show my skills as an oral advocate, I told him "Fuck YOU!"
Relatives of the cabbie converged on the scene as if for a wedding rehearsal -- children and elders, male and female.  They surrounded the vehicle in an unthreatening manner.  

The meter read $4.90.  I gave my driver a five and moved on to new challenges. 

From where I stood beside the highway, a rustic path led uphill to where the "river houses" might well be.  The layout, the landscape:  Things had changed since my college days.  There was no telling for sure what lay beyond the forested ridge where the path, longer and steeper than it had looked at first, took a turn into some trees.

A physical sensation of unfairness welled in me, coupled with doubts about the necessity of my mission.  Its precise scope was growing elusive, too.  Had it ever been evident beyond this point?  The important files I was carrying felt heavier than ever.   

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