I can leave work at five o'clock, if I want. But I was cold this morning, and tired, and hungry, so I didn't pack my gym stuff. And it's early now, too damn early to head back to Brooklyn and call it a night. Because I know myself. And once I get into my apartment, the dreariness overwhelms me. I change into cozy sweats, I eat a supper of some sort, I read, eat some more crap, climb back into bed, read, eat, re-cycle until I fall asleep. And that's too fucking depressing for me today, I need to move. I am full of excess energy and I need to feel something.

I stuff a metrocard, some crumpled paper money, my keys into my pocket. As usual, I have no specific destination, no plan. I take the train to midtown this time, instead of my usual, 96th Street. I set off, heading southeast from Times Square. I flow down Broadway, from 42nd to Union Sq. Stop into the Virgin Megastore, pick up a Rent cd. Cut across towards 4th avenue.

I keep moving, not slowing nor swerving. I steady pace, and it's been 1/2 hour, 45 minutes, I forget, I never knew, I don't give a shit. It's cold, and I shouldn't have left my sweater at the office, but I'm glowing inside with exertion, and the thoughts bouncing in the cavern of my mind are enough to keep my mind off my red nose.

I take 4th ave to 8th street, I think it is, veer east again, heading south on 2nd Ave. I reach Houston, I think it is, I don't even know, but it looks vaguely familiar from one of our noder gatherings. Ah, yes!

I stream down Rivington, glance sideways at yossarian's apartment.
Someone I know lives there, somewhere, wherever.
Another life and I might have stopped. Tonight I keep moving.

I find myself at Essex Street, and realize without full geographic comprehension that the train I need is further west. So I turn right on Essex, head across the dark city again. It occurs to me that I may, in fact, be in an unsafe area. Eh, I can't tolerate taking a train to a train to a train now, if I could keep moving in this night, breathing.

My meandering (if my brisk, flowing pace can indeed be called meandering on the sole basis of my lack of direction) takes me to Canal St, through Chinatown, where I've never been to before. I eventually reach Broadway again, where I break into a long, loping stride, I run the last 20 odd streets and hop on the train at Fulton.

Next time I'll start at Central Park, I think. And I'll stick to the East Side all the way. Or Broadway. Maybe that. One day I'm going to piece my usual pilgrimages: Wall St up to Houston, Union Sq to Lincoln Sq, Times Sq to 96th street...
Next time I'll start in Battery Park, I think.

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