22 February, 2011
without leaving the terrace
I stand outside on my terrace with my cold hands on the railing that could be nowhere other than Paris and I feel it begin to shake. From time to time the floor below my feet, along with the railing, rattles for just a moment. At first I thought perhaps I was back in California and it was simply a brief earthquake. But after having taken the metro today I know that the train runs right underneath this heavy brick building.
It shakes again now as I write and look from beyond my windowed doors.
I feel like a shadow on a wall or a bird momentarily birched outside a warm home.
I, without trying, look down into a woman’s cozy kitchen 3 flights down. Each night she cooks what appears to be the most incredible meal as she places the dish in the oven I wish I had. Today I think she was making either pizza or pomme frites. Ok, so perhaps not that amazing but it is freshly cooked and hot which sounds amazing to me today.
Another couple across the way lives in a tiny little box. The blonde curly haired woman and the often times half naked man do laundry almost every night as I watch them hang their wet clothes. Their heater clearly works far better than mine; I observe by the steamed windows and the bare skin.
Another older man, one floor up and one floor over, lives in a very stark apartment with very little detail. Perhaps he is a businessman in a corporate flat or maybe a recent divorcee trying to start over. I watch and I wonder. Either way he spends most of his days sitting at his desk working alone at a computer.
I wonder, what do they think of me as they look across the frozen streets to my apartment?