Friday, January 3, 2014

a snow story
David Bowie photograph by Metra 1976 AMI ProductionsPhila.PA

It was an unusually warm February night.
Everyone had shed their woolen winter skins .
Yes,it was that warm.

My teenage friends and I were delighted. We had plans to drive into the city at 3am and line up to buy David Bowie tickets.
An urban teenage form of “camping out”.

In the middle of the night,the weather abruptly changed.
And it started to snow.And snow.And snow.
A white out blizzard.

To this day,I’m not quite sure how we convinced my mother to let us go through with our plan.Especially as my friend’s car had a rear door that was tied shut.

We were determined.
Off we went at 3 am.
A gaggle of giggling teenage girls.

I remember the silence of the road.
Cushioned with snow.
I remember the cold of the car.
Heated only by our chatter.

The ticket office’s street was littered with empty frozen sleeping bags. The former occupants now snuggled inside their cars.

The grey of the early sky cracked.
The pink of the morning sun slowly crept through.
Bundled bodies gathered to reclaim their sleeping bags.
Markers of their place in line.

A restaurant’s early morning bread delivery was “borrowed”.
Up and down the ticket line.
Like the loaves and fishes.
Feeding everyone.

Squeals of delight echoed when the ticket office opened.
Elation replaced exhaustion.

(Though one of our friends suffered frostbite,we did not take her for treatment until after we got our tickets.By chance there was a hospital across the street from the ticket office.
The ER staff kindly treated “one of those crazy kids from that ticket line.”)

“The Return of The Thin White Duke.”
How those hot tickets warmed our hands.
And our souls.

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