The Uphill Slide

There is always something.

More Than


The same walk along Penn Avenue in Garfield was a summer evening more than three years ago. Or was it four?

I had come alone to dinner offering excuses for my husband’s absence. The Thursday night poker bluff. Oh, it really was poker night and the reason I always visited on Thursdays. And though factually true, it was still a bluff. No one believed. But I made the excuses, and others wordlessly accepted them.

The neighborhood was as unfamiliar then as it is familiar now. I didn’t know where I as in relation to any other neighborhood in the city.

Dinner was a pre-birthday celebration. A waste actually since I got a last-minute invitation to the birthday party. Despite knowing the invitation had been made from obligation, I went. Another day, another excuse.

Tonight I was not in a memory. I was in the past on that street walking past the restaurant that has gone through three more owners since that night. I was actually there. Have you ever felt that you were in more than a memory? That you had stepped into another time?

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