Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Cicadas in the City

Out the door and down New Jersey Avenue. The familiar arching trees shade the hotel and taxi stand. The Capitol lies ahead; its scaffolding gleams in the noonday sun.

I run for every light, avoid the waits, move as much as possible. It's the pace that does it, I think — a steady cadence does much to loosen the joints and free up the mind. But scenery helps also, and yesterday's was perfect. Blue skies, cicadas still singing, all the bustle of early September.

For many years I mourned New York City. Washington, D.C., could never measure up in quirkiness or energy or street life. But in the last several years I've mellowed to D.C. I appreciate the cicadas, for instance, and the tall trees that shelter them. Their crescendo is the sound of hot southern cities, a sound that says slow down. No one heeds it, of course, but at least it's there, mixed in with car horns and sirens.

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