A rest period

“Are you sick?” Jeff asked without hesitation, hearing my voice over the phone.

“Umm…yeah,” I admitted. “Ok, maybe I shouldn’t go to lunch anyway.”

For the rest of the day, I shut myself in my room. The fourth week that I was sick with some unidentified culprit, sneezing and letting my nose drip in privacy. In bed, I finished reading Choke and browsed through the latest issue of Good. For nearly an hour, I let myself lie…without reason. Not asleep, but not awake.

In that dream state, I remember being told how I should exercise. So at 4:45 pm as the sky was getting dark, I put on my contacts, pulled on atheletic pants and a U of M sweatshirt. Stuffing my feet into my Nikes, I tumbled out the door, walking briskly up to Noe Valley.

Two people looked at me weirdly with my head completely covered with my hood. At the top of the hill, I felt that I was on a rampage. I raced across the streets, only pausing at streetlights. At one intersection, I stopped waiting for a light until I realized there was no light. A car had stopped waiting for me to cross and sheepishly, I trotted forward after the realization.

At Castro, there was a biker blaring loud music as he drove around the block and back again. Families glanced at him. The couple not accustomed to a place without taxis looked startled. I let myself follow their thoughts of what a nuisance and disturbance and what kind of place that doesn’t have taxis? But corrected the conservatism to my usual liberalism as I crossed the street and again so that I was where I had started.

I zoomed back down the hill, avoiding the clothing stores and the bakeries that beckoned me. I had paused at Noe Valley Bakery earlier, but in my sudden desire to leave my apartment, I decided only bring my keys and a single dollar bill. At the time, I thought a dollar bill will be sufficient to buy whatever I would be compelled to buy. But of course, it wasn’t and I window-shopped instead.

In less than an hour, I was back in my apartment wiping my face and realizing that my apartment is really warmer than the outside.

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