You can't hear snow fall. At least I can't.
I often listen to rain sounds through headphones, stormy ones, with claps of thunder. Sometimes the sounds of a rainforest.
I can't hear snow falling, and I can't hear a birdsong. Maybe I could hear them if I stood in the center of Central Park, where if you squint, you forget you're surrounded by tons of steel and glass.
Sometimes I think of taking the train up north to I don't know where. Hiking in the scraggly woods of the other New York, the one without all the honking. But it's too cold now.
I need snow boots. I almost fell on the grate on the sidewalk that is already slick, even though the snow is fresh. It will be brown tomorrow and the next day.
I need gloves with all their fingers. I bought the fingerless kind, for texting, which was a total San Francisco move. My hat is knitted loosely with knobby yarn. It warms my ears, but not if the wind is a punch instead of a caress.
Sometimes I think of taking long walks in the mornings, but where would I go?
You could walk around this city for your whole life, slip into it, disappear, live off of dollar slices and fifty cent coffee from the carts, get fat, start a book club for one that meets every Tuesday at the library.
This city makes you work for it, work real hard, and do it amongst a million younger, leaner, richer and with better jawlines. No city cares about you. Least of all this one.
It takes a year, they say.
If I pull back I can see what it's all for. From a distance I can see magic. But up close it's a big old mess.
It's up to me. It doesn't come free with rent. It doesn't get served up on a beam of sunshine. It's not as easy as a gorgeous view or a cab ride down the hill toward the sea.
And I will give it all I've got.