Monday, October 20, 2008

in the thick of it

i'm in the thick of it, in a good way. school is in full swing, with students scurrying along the sidewalks from the main law school building to the other one, clutching cups of coffee and passing off tips about where to find the free pizza. the weather is starting to turn cold. it makes me grateful for the vendor who sells me coffee on monday and wednesday mornings at 60 cents a cup.

we tried a new taqueria today. rather, a loncheria, with $1 bean & cheese tacos and some amazing huevos a la mexicana. it just opened up at the curb market around the corner from our apartment and i stumbled upon it when i accidentally rode the subway a stop too far and had to walk home the long way. eating in a little room with sparse walls and bachata blasting from a boombox behind the counter happily reminded me of durham. t pointed out, as we were sitting around the table scooping up beans with tortillas, that our friend a (who is in the peace corps in guatemala) is eating like this every day. he quickly added: "i think he's sick of it." can't say i'm surprised, as i'm sure i'd be sick of it too after a while. but sometimes i wish i were tucked off in some little village in the middle of nowhere, eating beans and tortillas and speaking spanish.

we went to the countryside this weekend in celebration of our 6-year anniversary. it was a breath of fresh air, both literally and the other way. rolling hills. the smell of autumn. diners with bottomless mugs of coffee. train whistles. scenic routes. what-would-it-be-like-to-live-here?'s. since falling in love with t on that road trip way back when the country had yet to go to war, i seem to always get a little giddy this time of year. pumpkins, train tracks, long drives, and red and yellow leaves = falling in love. somehow, even the worst parts of our history have not eradicated my association of halloween decorations with this little love story of ours. maybe its that the best and the worst times have all happened this time of year, and maybe that's why this time of year my senses become so heightened.

on a less personal note, in just two weeks, it will be time for another gut-wrenching evening of watching the page turn and catching our first glimpse of the new chapter that lays before us. how long, how depressing these last eight years have been for us as Americans. it makes me sad. no matter how much hope there is to cherish, election day must also be a time to pause and reflect on the frightening power of the American people to steer our destiny down its fated path.

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