The day started off worse than most. I was attempting to sleep a sofa that was much smaller than I was tall. A thin blanket separated me from the cool, slippery surface of the leather. I didn't want to go anywhere. What I wanted to do was sleep for five more hours and preferably anywhere other than where I was currently trying to. The plan had been that me and my sisters would make a day trip with our brother who had to run an errand somewhere near Boston. So we planned, rather they planned and I fretted about their weak, many holed, vague ideas they wanted to carry through. In general I get grumpy when I am being swept along by the fickle and unpredictable winds that are my little sister's plans. Her intense expression and mulling belie the fact that she has little idea of what she is going to or rather the more important question of how she is going to do it.
We stopped off at some courthouse down some unsuspecting road. My brother changed out of the trunk into something more presentable to appear in before a judge. Inside a line of people stood leaning against the walls of the narrow hall. Some people sat in the few chairs they did have. A majority of the people looked at us when me turned the corner in search of the appropriate line for my brother to wait in. Their gaze was that of people with little else to do than to watch others. I was so used to people ducking their heads to look at the screens of their phones it was unsettling to see so many people silently watching each other.
I decided that I did not want to wait around inside and chose to slink out to the car, a car that was already warm from the heat of the sun. With the doors and windows open it was hard to avoid the dodgy couple that walked up to us saying they lost their phone. The guy's eyes shifted around as he talked to us, explaining that he couldn't find his iPhone, that someone must have stolen it. The long scratch on this face came into prominent view whenever his moved his head away from us looking into the brush surrounding the lot as if he could spot the phone from where he stood.
It was hard for me to believe that they even had a phone. And when the girl came right out and told us to return the phone I knew they had to be just a little desperate. They skulked off after we told them we definitely didn't have their phone. A few minutes later a woman came up to us, prefacing her statement with a touch of incredulity saying, "I don't believe them, but this couple said you stole my iPod."
I have never really liked traffic, especially the kind you bump into after a long day at work. The car and foot traffic while driving around Boston when we finally arrived a few hours later was not something I would want to experience every day. We circled around the Boston Common a few times pretending we might actually find a spot to park before we accepted that we needed to park underground. The parking garage was stuffy and had a low ceiling. Very few people were around and the silence was eerie. The lighting made the place seem dingy and criminal.
I think the only time I relaxed and allowed myself to have a good time was on the drive back to Providence. The traffic had slowed outside of the city. Cars sat under the hot sun, rippling waves of hot air seemed to come off the vehicles as well as the cement. The windows were down, the AC not working and the radio rumbled. The August heat lulled me into a happier state and as the car picked up speed the stuffiness withdrew out the windows and my hair was whipped into a chaotic tangle by the wind.