It finally happened. Spring finally showed up in Hoboken. And I feel like this:
I know, I know. Spring has allegedly been here for weeks. But it didn’t FEEL like true Spring until yesterday.
I walked out of the apartment wearing a fleece jacket instead of a giant, super-puffed down coat. The headphones of my iPod popped easily into my ears without screaming about their sensitivity to the cold wind. My sunglasses added a warm filter to the view of Manhattan’s skyline. Daffodils swayed in the window boxes I passed on 14th street, heads bobbing to the beat of the hip hop playing in my head.
Making my way to the waterfront, my thighs basked in the warmth of the sun as my black pants absorbed her rays. My shoulders dropped a little lower. My breathing became deeper. I smiled a little wider. My laugh came a little easier.
Hoboken always makes a point of looking her most beautiful when I try to leave her. And I made the mistake of timing my walk to coincide with high tide. I’ve always been a sucker for that brackish sea smell. It makes me think of the trips my family would make to the Outer Banks when I was wee. I could almost feel the sand crabs tickling the palms of my cupped hands as they tried to burrow to safety. Way to not play fair, Hoboken.
I banished the image by dragging my left hand along the top of the black metal railings that line the waterfront of Hoboken. I knew they’d be warm even before my skin made contact. I paused my steps to place my right hand on the rail as well. As the wind affectionately ruffled my hair, I watched the sun glitter off the crests in the Hudson River and the windows of the Empire State Building.
After strolling the length of Hoboken, I walked out to the end of Pier A Park. A seagull hovered in place, flying against the wind, waiting for the fisherman to reel in their prizes.
I lowered myself to a sun-warmed slab of granite and imagined I could just make out the tiny red lighthouse that lives at the foot of the George Washington Bridge some fifteen miles up the river. The bridge of my nose begged me to sit there long enough for the mid-day sun to leave a mark upon her. My toes cried inside my sneakers and begged to feel the still-wet earth beneath the blanket of fresh grass behind me.
Even though my head feels like little fairies spent the night packing my sinus cavities with those cotton logs dentists shove in the back of your mouth…
*wipes spray from computer monitor with sleeve*
….I still love Spring. And Hoboken. Damnit.