It was snowing now, light flakes betraying the morning sun’s promise of spring. I took a long moment in the doorway before I joined the crowd, fifty people moving in a hundred directions. To work. From work. To a friend’s home. To pick up the baby. To start a new job. To break up with their lover. To light the fireplace at home.
I feel insulated, now. The crowd protects me from the snow, the snow protects me from seeing anything too far away, and anything too far away doesn’t exist in any meaningful sense anyway.
I duck into a coffee shop for caffeine and quiet reading. I’ve spent so many hours of my life here, but it’s somehow different now, and there isn’t a flicker of recognition in the faces of anyone who looks up. I’m still insulated by the snow, by feeling like you’ve come home and found some other family watching your TV and eating off your plates.
I make my order and open the book to page one. It’s a beautiful place to be — fresh coffee, crisp pages, a new story in a familiar setting.