Friday, December 14, 2007
Clive died today.
I was playing hooky from work, so Mark and I drove out to Lawn Guyland to lunch with his mum. It was cold out but I was dressed for an indoor experience - tee shirt, jeans jacket, thin pants and sneakers. It was just supposed to be lunch and a walk around a mawl. That's it.
What happened was this - we had a filling lunch of corned beef sandwiches, fries, slaw and pickles. And then Clive was found dead in the parking lot, refusing to wake up.
Mark waited for the tow truck, while his mum and I walked the mile down the icy sidewalk to her place. The wind was blowing. Traffic whizzed by. We held hands to steady ourselves. We laughed at how much closer the restaurant seemed by car and how much worse it could have been (if it were raining, if we'd been in the middle of nowhere, if we were in New Jersey).
The flat soles of my sneakers skidded along. She'd fallen and broken her hip exactly one year before. We finally got to her place, then drove back for Mark and then to the Mini Cooper place nearby.
Clive was there, held helplessly aloft on the back of a truck, held steady with two cables. He looked smaller than usual, and a little apologetic. Later, Mark and I navigated his mum's car through traffic, back to Brooklyn.
One day next summer, I'll have to take a photo around dusk, showing the view of New York from the LIE with whole skyline lit up. There's the classic spire of the Empire State Building (tonight its lights were white), the tiered top of Chrysler Building, the jaunty slope of the Citicorp tower. It is a wall of lights and billboards that make New York look like a vast, indomitable monster.
I could see how impossibly big the city could look to someone who doesn't have a foothold already there. It's scary. And it looked bigger tonight without our dear Clive.
Photo by myself of Clive in Lawn Guyland.