November 14, 2009
I’ve been on the East Coast since Wednesday, but no askerly magic.
Sure, I’ve asked – around. For directions, and what platform a train leaves from, and how much a hotel room costs.
In my last trip to these parts, same time last year, I had dinner with a New Yorker, I asked my bus neighbor to be quiet, I secured a couple of discounts from Soho street vendors, and I sought mercy from a pair of heartless library bureaucrats at my grad school.
Today things are calmer. I’m in New Haven for a conference in my field, and bold assertions, risks or negotiations are not the first thing on my brain. Instead, I’m listening, learning, reflecting, taking it all in.
I have three days left of this trip. I fly back Monday.
People can cross deserts in that much time, coordinate last minute diplomatic forums between heads of neighboring warring states only to have them fall apart that morning because of an accidental and easily misinterpreted gun shot, devise solutions to complex mathematical conundrums, insert or extract artificial heart valves on half a dozen people and even brine a turkey.
The least I can do come up with something good to ask.
[image via ffffound]