This photo is shamelessly stolen from the internet, so I’m crediting this picture. http://www.flickr.com/photos/samuelnbarnett/1234623892/
It’s the journalism ethics classes that are getting to me.
Last night after the rain had cleared, the city became hot. Winds brought no sense of chill and the night was dark. We left the apartment, windows open, to join the city in its celebration of spring.
We slipped up the streets, green now and wet with rainwater. The beach stood ahead of us, taunting us, drawing us in.
Barefoot, shoes in hand, we crossed the barely crusted cool wet sand. It’s hard to describe, that feeling, but if I told you it looked like walking on the moon, you’d have to believe me.
Darkness filled the sky, was the sky, but barely touched the sand and at some point, the roundness of the lake was the sky, unending, all around. Sand, dented in with footprints but mostly smooth was the moon, floating, suspended over earth. It was that.
I turned around and was surprised to see the city, so invested in my moonwalk I had been.
Our feet got wet in the lake, up to our ankles, cold, biting water, flowing in and up.
I felt the rocks between my toes and the water went away again. I jumped out, up, back to the beach where they were dried off by a sand blanket. It covered my feet, scratchy yet familiar.
The path was there, green grass and among all of it, between the beach and the busy street, trees. We climbed them, pulling our weight off the earth and into the branches.
There was jumping, the soft thud of feet landing on the earth again, and we set toward home.
Only in Chicago can you walk through an utterly beautiful ecological system and then step back into the dirty city. Under the bridge, the train would have been above us then, or in a few minutes, we passed a group of dark dressed people, conversing, by an abandoned parking lot.
We did not look at them and they looked at us, one of them leering in so close I thought he’d hit my shoulder.
He didn’t, and we walked on.
Around the majestic building that is a high school. Around, fast food restaurants gleam neon in the night, cars thunder by, thumping music or hissing power.
Home, at last, quiet streets, dark night.
Beautiful, welcome at last to the city.