People on the streets of New York always seem to be in a hurry. I also find myself walking faster than I normally do. I decided now to walk in slow motion for a day, soon when I will be back in New York I will do that for one full day, to slow down my thinking and experience the city with all its details.
The F line late at night. I am going home. The compartment of the subway is drowned in a heavy smell of urine. On one side of the compartment I see a man dressed in layers of torn clothes; he is trying to sleep on one of the benches. Two tattered and tied plastic bags serve as cushions. The smell is so intense that all the other passengers group together and move to the opposite side of the train, covering their mouths. Space for sadness lies between us and the man.
A blind lady with a red and white stick walks over the narrow pavement, wiping away other passers-by. While sweeping her stick violently from left to right, she yells: “I will kill you if you get in my way, I will kill you!”
The not really lonely man
I am having breakfast in a little café in Brooklyn. Across from me an elderly man is reading a newspaper while eating his breakfast of bacon and eggs on a bagel, with unlimited coffee. He reads his newspaper out loud. He is wearing a red Corduroy blouse. Over the back of his chair he has draped a green army jacket with an American flag sowed onto the right sleeve. He looks like a lonely man.
His phone rings: “Hello sweetheart…. I’m having a coffee……yes I see you at two.” The expression on his face has changed into a smile as he tells the waitress “ I’m going to take care of my grandchildren today.”
I must also look like a lonely person to him.
In the corner of JFK airport I see an Asian woman curled up inside a corner. The colours she is wearing correspond to the surrounding.