I love Thursday nights, when the plane finally touches down at EWR. There's work to be done on Friday, but Thursday nights, no matter the Air Traffic Control delays, I am home. I love standing outside the terminal and breathing the warm port air, I love the local car service in Hoboken that knows my voice on the phone and is always waiting to get me home.

And I love the city lights coming into view as we speed down the 1&9 towards the Holland Tunnel. That is the best part of my week.

I'm not ashamed to say I love getting into Hoboken and cruising the streets towards home, especially on those nights when we're not getting there too late. I love it for the same reason I've loved this crazy little town ever since I first moved here - you can not get home without seeing pretty girls who are also trying to get home, or to the next bar, or what have you. Its just nice living here with them.

But damn, do I hate Friday nights.

Most of them, at least lately, I've had to work late, and then I order in and fatigue takes over and all of a sudden its mid-Saturday morning. Before that, when I was slightly less crazy, I'd wrap up late in the afternoon and head into the city to plan Sunday's lesson with Cregan at the church offices. Then maybe I'd hit the movies with Dave or meet a friend out for dinner.

But every once in a while I get roped into something in Hoboken on a Friday night. Tonight it was Matt's wedding rehearsal and the ensuing dinner. Rehearsal went smooth, then we were down to the waterfront for a nice dinner, and then it happened. Snuck up on me without a forethought, it did - my first walk home through the streets of the Bo on a Friday night in months untold.

And every one of those pretty girls is out with her boy. No one is single in this town on Friday nights. Cute couples on the river walk. Drunk ones on the main strip. Trendy ones having dinner at the nice restaurants. Cancerous ones having smokes on their stoops. Walking out, walking home, going shopping, coming home from work, out for a run, hopping in the car, they are just freaking everywhere.

A million reminders of how. alone. you. really. are.

I don't doubt the existence of infinite love and grace. Its just sometimes I think God maybe is capable of hating me in some cosmically simultaneous way.


Marianne said...

When I was in Italy last summer, the only thing to do at night was to walk slowly up and down a stretch of beachfront gardens called the "lungomare" with your sweetheart. Old couples and young couples, families, all walking slowly, talking, laughing, eating huge helpings of gelato. I. Never. Felt. So. Alone.

I watched their happiness with more hunger than I had for gelato. It's bittersweet.

Keep on walking. You'll find her. Then you'll have to make her spend just one evening walking on that street :-) But don't tell her why.

ellen said...

I can so relate. I've gotta disagree with Marianne, though. When you walk with her down that street, I think you should tell her why.