Strangers on a Train

Dear J—

The thought is out before I have a chance to bite ti back with my unworthy mouth: what are all these goddamn strangers doing on my train? I know, rationally, this is not my train and not my usual pattern of stops; they canceled my train and I saw it barreling down the tracks about ten minutes ago, already twenty minutes late and apparently unusable; I wonder if it had stopped somewhere to flush existing passengers off onto stations and places unknown, and how many of those people might have then gone on to find other means of transportation to and fro, here and there. Still, though, I could go on and on and on; you have a different set of cars, a different configuration, a different … it’s just different.

Different crew. Strangers. I worry about the hourly guys who are supposed to be at work by now to pull their long shifts; me I have no place better to be than on the side and waiting for the train but they have commitments and reasons for being and this train – this most-of-the-time-absolutely-set-your-watch-by-it train – this train is late and we’re stuck waiting because what else can you do about it?

I don’t see any of those guys and maybe that’s a blessing; responsible enough to realize there’s not enough margin left and boy you’d better be there or be … not there. There’s mist on the hills this much later in the morning and still not nearly enough time between now and the weekend, between now and tomorrow, now and the neverland that awaits.

Mike

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