I lead little to no life outside of my apartment, and no one sees the life I lead within. This is perhaps because I do not lead any at all. I scarcely leave the metaphorical steps of my metaphorical front door; which is essentially the door to my quite literal conjoined bedroom-kitchen studio apartment. (…b-itchen?)
However, when enough confidence has been aroused within me, I have been known to collect and ready myself enough to look rather put together and fairly well off. I grab whatever book I have been enjoying from my bedside and confidently step out into the world. This marks the somewhat semi-bi-annual-weekly ritual occurrences of my public debut.
I walk slowly, yet swiftly, down my street and past the topiary park. The entire way my eyes remain naturally stitched to whatever book I have grabbed. The main reason for me doing this is that it aids me further in avoiding eye contact with those I may encounter on my walk. Continuing on, I pass the green Methodist church and meet with one of about five security guards who have been hired by the Insurance building to help mainly their employees safely cross the street. As if a florescent yellow vest adds some kind of undetectable magnetic field helping to keep the already stopped cars at bay. Waiting for the light to change, we may talk about the weather, or he might mention the unnatural color of my hair, but more often than not we remain silent and cross the street together with a certain amount of awkwardness and avoidance that suggests we had just ended some kind of quarrel. Once on the other side of the street I part from my cross-walk guardian and dredge past the museum which remains half in ruins.
After this I have arrived on campus where I may see a few familiar faces and may even raise my hand as to suggest a haphazardly wave. This is where it all starts to come together.. With my face still pulled into the spine of my open book, I sense him. I do not see him, but I feel him near me. I do not dare look up from the page, but I know he is beside me, now behind me. I make my way to the cafe and find a table to continue reading at. I sit and know that outside, at the other end of this glass wall, he is there. I will not allow myself to look at him, though I am sure that he has seen me.
I may come across a friend sitting in the cafe and rest my book a little while to talk to them and at this point I have perhaps glanced to see if he is really there. Though I may catch the ragged and worn character of his clothes or the fuzzy outline of his figure, I never allow my eyes to bring him fully into focus. That would be risking too much. I may continue to sit and converse with my friends or keep my face in my book, but after some time, when I look up again to see his distorted presence, he is gone. I am left feeling as if I have been softly let down and abandoned. Rather disappointed, I check the time and begin my walk to class.