Sometimes we drive into a new city and all we see are the stories that we have heard.
Sometimes we try to take the city for what it is but we have no idea how to do that for more than a second at a time.
Sometimes the city is quieter than usual or busier than usual
Sometimes what the city is not what we see
Sometimes the brief moment that we spend with the city is not enough
Sometimes our judgment is not broad enough or deep enough or caring enough to hold a city
Sometimes we pay $7.47 for a large oat milk Matcha latte and we get handed a 120z. Not a 16oz.
Sometimes we say it’s OK
Sometimes we walk away and hold it against the city
Sometimes there are unsaid feelings in our relationships that seem so far away from us
Sometimes we go back
Sometimes we welcome us back
Sometimes we say it’s OK and we make a latte
Sometimes we don’t bring up the person who was killed in the city but we still want to see the place where we died
Sometimes thanksgiving doesn’t happen in the place you expected
Sometimes there’s a long list of important people who we could call and meet and slowly tell them about the things we think are important but that list of important people doesn’t feel that important when we’re passively arguing with our friend about the best way to start a fire
Sometimes we’re sitting in a parked car talking to our family and our car pulls up two feet in front of us and stops
Sometimes we look at the house with Mexican workers loading up their trucks and then we pull away
Sometimes we wonder why we stop and pull away
Sometimes we are out of context
Sometimes we don’t know where streetsmart judgments social contexts and racialized biases begin or end but damn that was sketchy
Sometimes we slow down and stop to see the address of a place we might buy or rent in a neighborhood in which we appear out of context
Sometimes where we are cannot be found on a map