I woke up to realize that my cell phone was missing. It had slipped out of my pocket during my commute. Miraculously, it turned up in the lost-and-found of a bus terminal at Jackson and Kedzie. My husband agreed to go out there with me to pick it up.
We drove out the Eisenhower to a very poor part of Chicago’s west side. This is a decrepit neighborhood, with people drifting across the streets, sitting around in front of their homes in the middle of the day doing nothing, or approaching passing cars asking for money. Their state is a reproof to love and liberality.
I didn’t take any photographs, being preoccupied with directing my husband to the right place, and because taking pictures of the neighborhood from the safety of my car would have been touristy.
The weather was heavy.
At the enormous bus terminal, which we found without difficulty, normalcy reigned. I retrieved my phone gratefully, eager to leave a place I didn’t belong.
The familiarity of the skyline was comforting. Heading to Ina’s for lunch, no sooner had we gotten on the Eisenhower than we got off.
Rain began falling, the heavens opening as we drove up Ashland. Stopped at a red, I took a picture of an unusual el station. I liked the color, and it interested me as a style and intellectually. It seemed almost Swiss, certainly ethnic in some way, a throwback to an earlier time. What was its story?
Under the el, the wipers worked hard, rain spattering loudly. Trains rumbled on top of that, super-blasts of noise.
When we reached the restaurant, it was raining too hard to get out of the car. We sat there watching a downspout, raindrops falling on puddles, until the cloudburst dwindled.
I wanted to take photographs inside the restaurant but didn’t. Using a camera or cell phone at the table is pretty rude.
Photographs carved from comfort zones are my specialty.