It was completely quiet.
The heavy door slammed behind me and blocked out a slew of intrusive noises -- some comforting, like the clatter of dinner plates; some irritating, like the wailing of an uncontrollable infant.
But up here? All I could hear was the soft sound of moving air.
The wind tousled my hair into knots as I looked over the ledge, down, down, down onto 6th Street. How happy I was to be perched up high, rather than sitting on the over-exposed front stoop. Typically I wouldn’t mind the chance for random conversation with eclectic passersby of the East Village, but today I couldn’t bring myself to keep up with arbitrary conversation.
I was tired.
The afternoon at work had been hectic, and I’d barely escaped in time to pick up supplies from Whole Foods. A group of us were making dinner that night and if I was in charge, then it better be half-decent, no?
So I purchased two bags worth of pita bread, olive oil, tomatoes, etc., and carried the Italian-themed smorgasbord eight avenues to the east and nine blocks to the south.
Despite my ambitious load of groceries, the walk was pleasant, considering I’d watched most of the day perish from the inside of an office building (as I’m sure you did too). Still, when I finally placed the brown paper bags down, my hands screamed in their displeasure.
As I dug around inside the oh-so trusty purse for Band-Aids, another thought occurred to me: After all that rushing, fast walking, and overall hustle – I was quite early. Too early.
In fact, no one was home.
Subsequently, I pretended to be “locked out of my apartment” so some gent would buzz me through the downstairs door. While I still wouldn’t have a key to my friends’ place, I did know there was always available rooftop access.
And in that instant, sunset was all I wanted.
And maybe also some of that hummus I’d just purchased.
(But that’s beside the point.)
Thus, there I was.
Sitting on the roof. Taking in that expectant moment when hurried night is about to overtake retreating day. During quiet twilights like this one, I can never determine if I’m despondent or excited; apprehensive or self-aware; completely overwhelmed or perfectly content.
I decided, quite contrarily, I was impossibly all of the above. Then I placed my jacket over my legs and slept peacefully, if only for a moment or so.
[Editor's Note: The rest of the evening was also immensely enjoyable.]