Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Dancing on the Edge.......
Inclement weather means train delays-always. Harsh winds knocked a crossing gate out of service at the Brentwood station so of course my train sat idling on the tracks for almost thirty minutes. It couldn't be the earlier train or the one after--it had to be mine. This meant I would miss my connecting train and I was going to be late for work again. What a way to start the work week after a great weekend!
Thankfully, here in New York there is always another train. They run every fifteen minutes or so during rush hour. When you commute daily, LIRR delays and cancellations are something you must learn to deal with. They occur almost every single day and you have to roll with it. It's not so bad when the weather is pleasant but on a day like yesterday--it is almost unbearable. It was hat, gloves, and scarf weather and all I had on was a light jacket. I was freezing. Those of us who use mass transit must dig out all our winter weather paraphernalia much earlier than those who get to sit in their warm, cozy cars. Try standing on one of those raised train platforms with the wind whipping, your teeth chattering, your knees knocking. Five minutes feels like an hour. Yesterday was only a sample. It's going to get colder!
Eventually I arrived in Hicksville to wait for a connecting train. I can't even describe how cold I was. I had also just finished drinking an extra large cup of Dunkin Donuts coffee. I don't need to go into details about THAT but I am sure you can imagine. Every single train was delayed but I was afraid if I ran down to the rest-room, my train would miraculously arrive and I would miss it.
I noticed a young guy standing on the platform nearby. He was dancing and singing along to the rap music blasting from his I-Pod. It was so loud I could hear it clearly. I watched him for a few minutes and began to smile. He glanced over at me, removed his headphones and said "Hey! What you lookin' at?"
" I don't know how long you have been waiting here but I do know you are as cold as I am," I replied. " I am just watching you make the best of a bad situation!"
He laughed and moved closer to me so I could hear his music even better. There we stood, two strangers, dancing on the train platform. I lost track of time and forgot how cold I was. Other commuters stared and frowned at us as if we were insane. They were cold, aggravated and late, just like we were. The difference was, we were getting warmer as we danced up a storm and they were too tired, too embarrassed or too conservative to join in with us. I didn't care and neither did my new friend. We were free!
I was almost disappointed when my train finally did arrive. All my worries and the fact that I was ridiculously late for work had faded away . I felt happy, warm, and filled with anticipation of a great day. All it took was a simple dance on the platform edge to make me feel this way. I was thankful to a kind stranger for sharing his music and his joy with me.
Life is what you make it, folks. You can stand there and shiver, whine and complain or you can dance without a care in the world and feel the warmth spread into your heart and soul. It's your choice. I choose to dance..........
And this is my Daily Cyn.........