It's officially Christmas in Mammon--the cups at Starbucks are red. This fills me with a knee-jerk nostalgia for the fall/winter of 1999. It all started on Thanskgiving, the first one after my mom's death, and we were gathering as a family for the first time since her memorial service.
I met my sister Miss Cookie in Hoboken at the train station for the trip into deeper Jersey, and we had time to wander around a bit.
We stopped at one of the 74 Starbucks in 'Boken--this one inhabiting what used to be my bank. I'd never had a latte before (seriously), and my sister said, "Oh, get one, they're great." And we shared a low-fat cranberry muffin.
I was so proud of her, because she was really sparkling that day. She had just started a new writing job (promoted from secretarial to corporate communications, a big step for the likes of us who kinda eschew success at every turn) and had a smart new haircut and a really confident demeanor.
And I was a newly-minted yoga teacher, completely in love with the lifestyle and teachings and feeling like a pocket tornado of light and energy and wisdom.
For a brief moment, I got a sense of what my life would have been like had my family been...normal and functional. Two sisters, happy and fulfilled and doing work that they loved, with good haircuts and figures, going home to a happy family meal. Somehow this was all spurred on by losing our mom.
Anyway, those damn red cups became a part of that meltingly lovely fall and winter. Everyday before work ( I was still working at Lehman Bros), even if I was late, I would stop at the S-bucks on Dey Street (now closed forever, I imagine) and get a red cup of something.
Today after class, even though I was pretty much high on neurotransmitters and sweat, I stopped in for a cuppa, lured by those muted red sirens o' cardboard.
At the Court St N/R station, Clinton St exit, there's an elevator. By the elevator doors, there's an elevator call button right next to an emergency panic button. Many's the time I almost pushed the wrong one, and today. someone next to me actually did. The result: "bbrrring!....brrring!" Just a ringing phone that didn't get answered the whole time we stood there. I guess it's more of a placebo safety measure than a real one.
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