Saturday, February 01, 2014

this is my manhattan, 2.1.14

I've been learning, this past week, about a woman I barely knew. I've been looking at pictures of her, so dynamically joyous and awkward, severe and beautiful, hearing about her loves and quirks and fears. I barely knew her, having met her only twice (first at her own wedding and then again, a year later, at my brother's), and yet this morning her face, heart breaking, woke me before dawn.

Hours later, well after full light, I headed down the hill to meet friend Freddy for our Saturday morning walk. We made it through our weekly catch-up on each other's goings-on, him filling me in on his nephew and his classes and his music, me relaying this past week with only the barest hint of tears.

We headed north, meandering up the east side of Fort Tryon Park, reveling in the surprising warmth after a month of bitter cold. We bought cookies at the farmers' market and munched contentedly as we walked up past baseball diamonds and playgrounds and fields of geese. Eventually we reached the edge of the water, frozen in great buckling slabs of ice -- but cracked and melting just the littlest bit along the shore.

I wanted to share that moment, that icy thawing moment, with the husband this woman left behind. I wanted to bring some sort of comfort to this man who's been around since I was just a tiny tow-headed girl, and who many years ago helped my family navigate through this same icy tundra of grief.

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