The river is green. It smells like rotten eggs, pushing leftovers towards the ocean. Sulpher, I’m told, but what does that even mean? Why do bad eggs and dirty rivers smell the same?
I’d chosen the river as a reference point, something somewhat natural to walk next to, but you can’t walk next to it. So I walk on the dusty, red brick sidewalk, knowing the water is somewhere to my left, separated from me by apartment buildings and small businesses.
I brought the camera, though I’m not sure why. There’s nothing to photograph here. Nothing that isn’t hard gray rising skyward, or a spare tree planted to take away from the sharpness of the steel.
My arms ache from rock climbing yesterday, and my hamstrings are tight from the workout I did in my living room. I want to run, but not here. Not on this damn concrete.
Once you’re happy, you think that’s it. You’ll be happy forever. You move to a new place, start a new job, make new friends, and you breathe a sigh of relief. Yes, this is where I’m supposed it be. This is what everything was leading up to.
But that’s not always the happy ending. It’s a continuation and every day isn’t perfect. Every day isn’t great or happy, and sometimes you feel yourself sliding back into the grayness, looking for a handhold to hang onto to keep yourself out of it. Sometimes you find one. Sometimes you don’t. And there you are again, in the black hole of Why am I even here? Was this a mistake? Would it have been better if I’d stayed? I miss everything. I want something different. It’ll never be okay.
But then, one day, all of a sudden the sun is shining. Not the faint rays of morning in the spring, but the direct heat of a mid-June picnic. Everything is perfect, and as you scratch the itch that whispers its doubts, you think, again, that it’ll last forever.