I climb from my cocoon, soon to face reality. Having been nestled in my narrow upper-level seat, hunched inside my winter scarf which has prematurely become essential, sipping homebrewed coffee, reading the rollicking and effortless prose of Dave Eggers and being somehow grateful for the sinus congestion which dulls my senses to a pleasant stasis. But the train arrives at its destination far too soon, and I step into the chill, shuffling slowly with the crowd, trying to grasp a last sip of coffee while not drinking too deeply and ingesting the gritty grounds, and I realize that my congested head and the lack of sleep I've fought for the past few nights will sap my energy for the coming day.
Walking down the plaza, I also realize how much my field of vision has narrowed. I make this same two-block walk every morning, and I likely won't see the outside world again until it's time to get back on the train and go home. Lunchtime strolls have become rare, and mid-afternoon coffee-and-writing sessions even more so. I have the outside world amply reported to me at my desk, during my lengthy Internet sessions, but direct contact is becoming increasingly infrequent. Just something that I need to fight through periodically.