Because I'm allowed to hold my head up again, I've been out walking and errand-running while I wait for my eye surgery to be scheduled. I have learned how hard it is to do some things with one eye: walk down a broken escalator, put money in your wallet, swipe a debit card in the slot on the little machine. I walked up to the Whole Body store on 25th St to buy vitamins, and because I couldn't see to fit my card into the slot the cashier became quite solicitous. She had to key in my account number twice, and when I offered to give her another card she demurred. She didn't want anything to be more difficult for me. I was both grateful to her and about to cry; I'd never quite so clearly been seen as disabled. Then I went into Whole Foods to buy something for dinner; the store was busy, i was trying to walk forward, be aware of where my handheld green plastic basket was so I didn't whack anybody, and thread my way through the people and the carts, and suddenly I just wasn't sure I could handle it. I had to stop behind a column and just breathe next to the no-sulfites bacon till the feeling passed. Then, determined not to be defeated, I shopped.
Walking home on Seventh, I stopped and covered my left eye, so I could look at Manhattan through my right. What I saw was a murky gray city, tinged pink with my blood, and the dark shapes of figures moving toward and away from me; the one bright spot was a beautiful ripple of reddish neon, saying what I couldn't tell you. It was apocalyptic and like no city I know, and I thought, This is the adventure my soul is having.
Then I had to jump over one of those big slushy puddles that are the ice-cold perils of city intersections when the snow starts to melt, and just as I came down on the other side a taxi six feet away honked at me and scared me half to death, and I was filled with rage. The furious don't think about the spirit at all.