How We Got to Chicago

I can’t remember how we got to Chicago. Is that strange?

Granted, it’s been six years now, and granted, there were, as I recall, a number of transportation methods involved after we arrived: taking the El into the city, biking around Emily’s neighborhood, driving her car to Little Rock and then Memphis. We set up tents in the dark and woke up early, cold and soaked in dew. We clambered up boulders, snuck into blues clubs full of white people, gobbled barbecue soaked with the kind of thick, penetrating sauce meant to really settle into flesh — it wouldn’t leave your own fingers for days, and you began to view your body as not so different, really, from that previous pig’s.

But we started in the middle of no where, New York: why do my memories begin in her house (down to the large sleepy cat named Panda and a bike ride across an old wooden bridge) and not on a plane (the adrenaline coursing with lift-off, the promise of new friendships forged in travel)? It’s the strangest thing.

And, perhaps, even stranger, how can they end there — as if I never returned?

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