Walking through Grand Central Station tonight for the last time as a local NYC commuter, I thought I’d feel a bit sad. Instead, the “signs” started showing up (as they always do) to remind me that I am indeed on the right path: moving back to Aspen.
First, it was the stench. Yes, the smell of the underground RR has bothered me before, but never worse than today. Then there was the inescapable mold all over the escalator ceiling grasping my attention as I descended into the depths of Gotham to catch my ride home.
And the hoards of people! Was it because of the annual squash tournament taking place or was it because today was my last day walking through the terminal and this was another sign? As I made my way home, freezing to death because of the 33 mph winds, I thought: it has never been this cold on a prior commute.
I made it home and turned on the local news. That’s when the next sign appeared: Rats.
They weren’t in my apartment, thank God! But they most certainly were the lead story on the nightly news. About fifty rats had invaded the Taco Bell/Kentucky Fried Chicken in Greenwich Village today (due to a “supposed” basement construction project). I’m getting the heebie-jeebies again just thinking about it. Customers had apparently notified the media for one reason and one reason only ~ so that I’d have yet another path-confirming sign. You hear about the rats here in NYC. You anticipate seeing rats (although I can thankfully say I hadn’t to date). You even kind of expect to see the rats. But to actually witness so many of them running rampant in the now shut-down restaurant chain was enough to make me nauseous and turn the channel.
So, I remote my way over to 20/20 and guess what was showing? An episode entitled “Scared Stiff: Worry in America.” Naturally, the show concentrated on New Yorkers and their worrisome ways: getting stranded on a subway…too much hustle bustle…getting stuck in high-rise elevators…too many strangers everywhere…an overabundance of cancer-causing technology waves…the overbearing noises of the city…the unhealthy drinking water…another 9/11 terrorist attack…Hmmm…
I think I’m done looking for the signs. I’m ready to get out of the “rat race.”
Contributor: Connie Hammond
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