"Twenty-oh-one Independence." I said it confidently to the taxi driver, and tried to sound bored, too. I tried to sound like the city was my home, my everyday life, and that I knew this place that I was just coming back to. I know this place, cabbie, so don't jerk me around. "Rig(more)ht where Independence meets Howley," I added. It's what Paul had said to me when he set me up with the place. I had no idea what it meant then, either.
"I know it," the driver said. I sat back and didn't say anything else, praying that he wouldn't either.
I looked out the window and thought, probably for the first time in weeks. The phone call, the planning, the changes in plans... it all happened to fast that cruising through city traffic seemed like a moment of peace. And finality.
I was here now, after all. That was done. What happened now? I looked out the window some more. Bars and restaurants and shops passed by; I tried to read every sign and peek in every window. Would I ever eat in that restaurant? Will this bar become my favorite hang out? Will I shop in that bookstore? Will I meet someone there...?
I knew I'd be in the city for a while, that I'd have a life here. That was all to come, surely. But what was it? I kept looking at the signs and the people, looking for the life I would have.
I was gawking so intently that my "Don't Hassle Me, I'm Local" ruse had probably evaporated. The cab slowed down and pulled over. I looked at the driver and he nodded in the direction of the building.
"Twenty-two fifteen," he said. When I paid him he added, "And good luck." (less)
The coffeemaker light made Leslie squint. Her sleepy blue eyes looked cut from paper as she spun her "There is probably Vodka in here" coffee mug.
Few, final perks and Leslie poured into her mug. Every morning she wakes hours before she needs to find time for th(more)e things she should be doing. She turned and walked back through her living room.
Half-way in she realized she still had the pitcher of coffee, and waited to make her mind up if she should turn back or not.
Clearly, she couldn't take both to bed, and she turned back. The living room was slanted with street light coming in from an open window.
Things that early in the morning happen absently. Leslie placed the coffee pitcher on the table and walked over to the window.
A slight stumble and a few drips of coffee tumbled out of the mug. She cursed, and things rumbled in the living room.
The leather creaked on the couch. "That you?" someone else asked in the night.
Leslie leaned down to touch the couch, before realizing that someone was on the couch. She held the mug in both hands, and in the dark, said of course it is.
And in the dark, she thought she heard laughter. And when others laugh, she just has to chuckle to herself.