Adjusting to being back "in the world" is an odd process with stops and starts. Today I was in New York. I drove to Trenton then hopped on a train and got to spend the day with several different interesting people. That part was just fine. But since these people were in different parts of the city I had several views of this vibrant metropolis.
The most jarring was the Brooklyn Bridge. I took the Park Street line to one of the most beautiful bridges in the world. I walked up the middle on the tourist path. There was a point where those cables sweep up in a beautiful arc--it is where the group of walkers are clustered on the right of the path in the photo above. At that point of the bridge I looked up along those cables. The sky was perfectly blue, not a cloud in sight. It was cold. The wind was blowing straight across the bridge deck at more the 20mph. The flag above the bridge pointed straight north.
I stopped and stared up for a long time. I walked a little further, but I was still staring so I stopped again. The bridge look so majestic and tall and clean. The sky line in every direction was brick and glass and steel. Planes and helicopters flew overhead. Boats made there slow way under the bridge in the shipping channel.
Everywhere I looked was a contrast to the low, dirt-covered, place I left. Trees and grass grew everywhere the concrete did not cover in New York. At Tallil the lawn was gravel. My senses were overloaded. I was in civilization. This is home.