I've moved! This page should automatically redirect in 5 seconds, but if it doesn't, then click here.

6.20.2011

a friday night cab ride.

i took a long, lone cab to brooklyn last friday.

i finished work, slipped out of my trusty black heels into a pair of worn flip-flops, untucked my work blouse, pulled my hair into a pony, and with exhaustion in tow, raised my arm and hailed a cab.

i listened to johynny flynn's sweet william, part one the whole way there:

i was born with this story, it's older than i.

as the familiar lights of ninth avenue streaked past and a cool air slipped in the window i could think of nothing but a night nearly seven years ago when i and three girls from school squeezed ourselves into our friday night best, piled into a yellow taxi, and headed into the belly of the beast that  friday night in manhattan invariably becomes when you're young, wide-eyed, and (yes) impressionable.

we hardly knew each other then. hardly knew new york. hardly knew ourselves. and certainly didn't know what was to come.

but i do remember that paused at a stoplight, i thought: i should remember this. this will be one of those nights i'll need to remember. this is the beginning. this is the starting point. 


and that's all i remember of that night.

well, that and the gorgeous garden balcony boasted by the chelsea apartment we finally ended up at.

one of the girls in that cab is married now. to the man she began dating not long before that late september night. another is engaged. many working actresses. all thousands of miles from home. all forging lives and ferreting out truth--or trying to, at least. one girl i haven't spoken to in years. with the others we do what we can but life is hard and time is short and the phone calls have become uneven at best.

i have spent so much time in the seven years sandwiched between those two cab rides wishing it all went differently. wishing the great love of my life proved himself such. wishing i was well. successful, even. wishing it all went a little differently.

but here's the thing. headed to brooklyn last friday, still in my work clothes, speeding down ninth avenue, i felt so...happy. so at peace. so aware that all those seven years and all those things i would've changed led to that moment--to that delirious, little, heaven-sent moment--to that moment in which i was filled by a story older than i, filled by the past, charged by attraction and desire, and thankful i didn't get the guy or the job the first go round.

because i'm still so young. and i've got a little rebellion left. and i'm finding all it takes is a smile to melt a man. they don't care what you're wearing or what you do or even the size of your hips. just a smile and they turn to putty. and it's so damn fun to watch for that moment in which they return the gesture and then wonder if they've done it suavely. and men, i'm gonna level with you: most of the time you haven't. but that makes it all the better. suave is so uninteresting.

and i'd take interesting and flawed any day of the week. whether it's a man. or my life.

27 comments:

look a little closer said...

i really, really, reallly love this post. sometimes i feel like life is this revolving door of people and memories and that while i want things to stay the same, change is the only constant. and sometimes that can be overwhelming, but little posts like this remind me of the good things to come and that somehow it all falls into place.

i'm happy you're happy. :) and i'm happy you're writing such beautiful things. xoxo

Jill said...

love that last line. thanks for writing.

Magdalena Viktoria said...

I love this post. The realization that hey, things didn't actually go to plan (plans change anyways) and how many beautiful things come from falling a bit short, or taking a little longer to get there.
Imperfection IS beautiful.
xoxo

Little Tree Vintage said...

interesting and flawed is the only way
to be, no one wants perfection that's not fun! it's amazing
to read your stories and really feeling the way you
felt in that moment, as always you have such beautiful
writing.

christine said...

Yes, yes, yes!!!

Beautiful stuff and beautifully written.

cristie said...

well said...interesting...and, solid. yes. ccc

Robby Spratt said...

That last paragraph is amazing! You are definitely right about that smile.

Alex said...

So beautiful. You always know how to put feelings into words.

wildchild said...

beautifully written. beautiful truth. also, i found this on boundlessfille.blogspot.com and i think you'll like it. a quote about rebellion: http://brian.carnell.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/albert-camus-freedom-quote.png

Paula said...

i LOVE this! :) that last line brought tears to my eyes... so true for me too :)

so funny how we can be from 2 different worlds on opposite sides of the world and i can still relate to your writing and your story!!

and p.s. i think u are super awesome! :)

becky said...

Sometimes I read your blog and I comment (truthfully) and I think "wow, that girl can write". And then times like today occur and I actually don't know how to comment on it at all. This is perfection as I haven't before seen. This is so rhythmic and paced and eloquent. And the thought behind it--the feelings and the emotions and the, well, the realisations--they are so, so special. It is actually unbelievably difficult for me to articulate just how good this piece of writing is--just how much it speaks to or moves me. But it does--so much. I just cannot get my head around your talent--or the privilege I feel to be reading something quite so special.

Gretch said...

"and i'm finding all it takes is a smile to melt a man. they don't care what you're wearing or what you do or even the size of your hips. just a smile and they turn to putty. and it's so damn fun to watch for that moment in which they return the gesture and then wonder if they've done it suavely."

love- love. :) coming out of lurking, by the way, hi!

Mackenzie said...

oh man, i am so trying not to cry in the middle of the library right now. this was so so uplifting to read. i need this pasted on my wall. or on a coffee mug. sometimes i too have to remind myself that i'm not meant to be with a boy i worked at a corny theme park with. or that cute guy on the subway. the right one is running towards me, i just can't see it yet. thanks for the reminder, meg :) xo

Tucker said...

beautiful. as always. yes, the guy, the job - the first go around ... he'll and it will show himself - the perfect ones for you (:

kelly : pinetothepacific said...

just what i needed to read. you capture that feeling so perfectly, meg! thank you. xo

Claire Kiefer said...

This post literally made me get teary-eyed, because I find myself in the exact same place right now. Except I'm gonna be 30 this summer and that scares me. This past Tuesday afternoon, Micaela arrived in SF and I took her to my favorite sorbet place. I was so excited about the sorbet, when I spotted a good friend of my ex-boyfriend (you know, THE ex-boyfriend). My ex, Alex, has been living in China the past 5 years, and the last time I saw him was at the Beijing airport in late 2006. And I ran into one of his best friends, who said, "Hey! You know, Alex is moving back, getting married!" And I choked, and smiled, and opened my eyes real wide so I wouldn't cry.

And then I found myself longing for my early 20s, when I spent my evenings hopping around SF with my girlfriends, not worried about ending up alone.

So, I appreciate this chance to relate with you, right now, more than ever.

Keiko said...

interesting is much better... you spoke right into where i am in my life right this very moment.

thank you.

sarah said...

really beautiful meg! this post really nails it for any new york city girl. some of our best self reflection is done alone, in a cab, at night.

keep up the good work!

Jo said...

So beautifully put. And, I couldn't agree with you more!
xox

Janine said...

You are such a beautiful writer. Your blog brings a smile to my face and a smile to my heart every single time.

the soft soled said...

Wow, your writing is stunning. Completely in the same spot today. Thanks for putting the feelings into words.

Karen in Progress said...

I've always said that perfect is boring. This reflection on your life is beautiful.

BrightEyedWashingtonian said...

"filled by the past, charged by attraction and desire, and thankful i didn't get the guy or the job the first go round"

I love this. I'm 30, single and living in downtown DC, I still have these moments. Often lately. Enjoy your life right now because it's likely that someday you will be with someone and perhaps with kids, yearning for the freedom and exhilaration of your time right now. C'est la vie!

Joyous said...

this one got me... really got me... maybe it's b/c i've been in that cab and had those thoughts, and i'm familiar with the lights and the wind and the past... whatever it was... this one got me... you my dear, are remarkable!

Cara-Mia said...

I love this post.

Kate said...

This makes my night.. week.. whatever. So many times I wish I could change something that happened in the past. Change where I'm at in life. I always forget just to be happy for who I am and who I'm with. It's easy to forget to be happy.

Sera said...

i love this, meg! it can be so neat to look back on the past and realize that everything that happened took you exactly where you needed to be. :)