New Year’s Street Corner
After an improvised countdown on the porch, the fireworks start. I run to the street corner with 7-year-old Robie to get a better view. Not an improvement at all. Downtown Austin’s skyline blocks most of the display. My heart drops as I expect a justified rant from Robie, but he seems content to be in a city with fireworks show.
A group leaves the corner bar. Loud, excited, decided. They’re headed for more of the night. I’m closing out ours. At the back of the group, a girl.
She looks tired, or disappointed, or even resigned. Her steps are a bit unstable on her high-heels. Could be drinks or that she’s being hurried along by her group.
Our eyes meet. We both press a smile. Two decades of difference, crystallized by each’s circumstances: she’s heading out, I’m heading in. She has all the excitement of the unknown, I have the comfortable certainty of those expecting me.
Two directions and magnitudes, sharing a street corner on the first few minutes of the new year.