Hey, dears. Would have…

Hey, dears. Would have written earlier, but connection wasn't working for some hours; no idea why. I love computers, right? Right.

It's 10:30ish...I'll probably go to sleep when I finish this entry. Last e-mail check of the day. :-) (What's the first thing we do in the morning and the last thing before going to sleep? It probably ought to be 'brush my teeth'...but you know it's not :-)

An odd moment yesterday. I had taken BART into the city and was having a quiet lunch at a little sandwich place at the Powell Street BART station, in the basement of the San Francisco Shopping Center (spiffy mall). Well, typical mall crowd, sort of noisy, but I'm sitting at a little cafe table, eating my 1/2 chicken pesto supreme sandwich, reading Kev's copy of Simone de Beauvoir's _When Things of the Spirit Come First_, and managing to block out the crowd noises pretty well. Then, just as I'm finishing, there's this gorgeous music, striding classical music, suddenly playing. And I'm wondering what the heck is going on, and I turn around, and just outside the cafe area, three tables or so away, is a live string quartet, in formal garb, playing. And there's a little sign of course, "Live String Quartet, Fridays 12:00 - 1:30" or some such. And I'm sure there's some rather grubby commercial motivation behind it all, behind the mall paying these people to come and perform, but I don't care. They're there and they're beautiful, and I'm finishing my sandwich and reading Marcelle's story, and surrounded by music that is hauntingly familiar, even if I can't remember which piece it is, and I am so happy. I studied classical piano for ten years, growing up. I wasn't bad, either, though what frustrates me most now is not that I can no longer play those pieces (though that's bad enough; I could probably get them back if I practiced, though), but that I can't even identify many pieces that I've performed. And there was a twinge of that, listening to them, but mostly, that music was a gift. I wonder how many of the shoppers wandering through had ever heard a live string quartet before...

I think this is what I love about living in a city. The fact that you can turn a corner, lift your head, and find something completely unexpected. Sometimes beautiful, sometimes sordid, sometimes sad and pathetic, but something outside of the normal, whatever that is. So many different realities coexist within a city. Perhaps they do in small towns as well; I imagine they do, within people, but in a city those realities are made visible for you. Even in the clothes as people walk down the streets of San Francisco.

I wonder what Salt Lake City will be like. Kevin called me this evening from there. He has a post-doc there, at the University of Utah, starting in August. He went out this weekend to look around, look at apartments. I may move out to join him there, at least for part of the time. So few bookstores, so few ethnic restaurants. He hardly saw anyone in the streets who wasn't white. I grew up in a neighborhood that was predominantly white, Polish Catholic, in fact, but it's been a while since I've lived in that kind of environment. And while the Mormon Church (Salt Lake City) has recently proclaimed that blacks are *not* in fact inferior to whites, they are still virulently anti-gay.

*smile* Alex (Brit) made me promise that if I hated it there, I'd have enough sense to move back...

Well. It would be interesting, anyway. We'll see.

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