It was a weird feeling, being alone in that place.
I was driving through Long Island to get to the ferry, rushing to get there, speedily driving to ensure that I had not wasted my money on a journey I could not even make. The yellow lines became blurs as the road was left behind. I began to sweat, my heart raced, and my eyes quaked with both anxiety and fear.
Alas, I made it onto the ferry, pulling into the last spot available right as a massive blizzard began to fall to the earth. I got out of my car, ran up to the second deck, and paid the man behind the glass an astronomical amount of money just to take a 1 hour boat ride. I thought to myself: was it always this expensive? I got lost for a bit wondering about this, but I returned from my digression after I realized that I had spent the last of my money and emptied out my wallet.
To cool down, I went outside, deciding that it was worth to cold to have a space to think. I was the only one there, the cold wind biting at my face and the snow slowly dampening my newly cut hair. My peacoat and suit were not enough to protect me from the pain that winter was providing, but I needed to cool off. The ride was chaotic enough as it was. I needed the peace that one rarely finds in New York traffic.
It was here that it set in. I had not been on this ferry for over a decade, not since my last trip to Long Island in my adolescence. As I remembered that time period I began to well up... I had wedged myself between two family members as the cold was too much to bear. I then ran inside to get money from one of my grandparents to buy a pretzel.
I really wish I remembered more... But this is tangential to the story I am telling. Like the manifest content of a dream, the memory is not as important as the latent underpinnings. The memory is not the main actor on the stage. Like the irrelevance of the content of a dream, I became fixated on the process of being in the cold. Here I was, almost two decades later, and I was on the ferry alone. There I was, standing at the edge of a ferry, in a five hundred dollar suit and a slicked back hair cut that was being ruined by the melting snow, and it all set in.
For the first time, I realized that I was no longer a young man. I was no longer a child, an adolescent, or even a 'young adult,' whatever that may mean. My younger years had long passed.
And in that cold wind, I realized that the melting snow was not the only thing that was dampening my face, as the tears slowly rolled down into my beard, freezing instantly, then falling to the deck. I quickly wiped them away, looked over the water to the Massachusetts coast, and smiled.
I stood there for the entire trip, stuck in a haze, but relishing it. There was something new about this that I wanted to explore.
After an hour, I returned to my car, and I drove off. I left the pain and smiles of that experience behind on that boat and began my new trip, my new path, my new journey.
It has been a while since I have logged onto this site. I took this trip two weeks ago and was actually debating whether or not to post my story. But as I perused through my notes and emails, I decided to look at all the people that I have followed (and who have followed me) since my joining oh-so-long ago. Of particular note would be my old friends, x-summerxtwilight-x
, and one of my oldest friends, QwithoutaU
Like me, you have all grown up, matured, and enhanced your art. As I searched through galleries and read about your lives, I have felt privileged. Keep on living the life that you want, do not wake up in the morning with regret, and choose your own path.
I think I will log on more regularly now. Since I am no longer doing photography, maybe I will simply write, and hope that people will find some meaning in the experiences I can share.