I remember cold nights and knit hats snatched up from the arms of someone else, in an apartment that seemed to house half the inventory of the storied shops on the street below. I remember feeling giddy in my toes, so numb they might fall off but imbued with the teenage fire to keep marching on. I remember grey skies and raindrops that fell like manna from the heavens and buses that never came. Late nights spent restlessly tapping my feet, checking my watch and trying to send an iMessage to reassure my parents with the one bar of internet that occasionally blew my way.
I remember those girls in crisp dresses and weathered boots, faces tilted like an open invitation, lips parted in open scorn– walking enigmas. Laughter floated on the humidity as it evaporated towards the shingled rooftops, indistinguishable from the man-made smog streaming out of the dimly lit cafés with their plastic tarp overhangs and overpriced café au lait— a midnight heaven.
I remember reckless abandoners. The boys so haunting you forgot they too were haunted. And the promises that never materialized, disappearing as the words hit the air. All smoke and no substance. Just shiny coins and pretty thangs and hugs that smelled like fresh air.
Backstage at sunset on Madison Avenue, far away from reality, I remember neon lights and the slow feeling as smiles worked their way through bodies. Nestled in the crook of a stair step, leaning on concrete and each other. Hair tangled up in words and eyes caught up in the glow. Arms linked, zigzagging through the dark, wet, streets with bright hearts and frost on our cheeks.
(This post was originally an English assignment to capture a moment that meant something to us.)