New York City, May 17, 2017

★★★★ Indoors it was already hot, in the brightness of early morning. Outside the night’s coolness was only tenuously hanging on. The schoolyard gate failed to open on time, and the children backed up on the sidewalk got rowdy at the sight of the empty playground. Once the sun got higher, stepping out the door was like setting off a flash. Tattoos were emerging and hot asphalt was giving off its smell. A women, her legs bare and pale, reached over and cupped the inner bottom of the seat of the suit pants of the man she was walking with. Iced coffee droplets dotted the notebook page. A tour bus stood in the middle of Fifth Avenue, top deck and lower deck and driver’s seat all empty. The office temperature was low enough to prompt a walk outside and over to Sixth Avenue and back in the sharp sunshine. Pockets of stale traffic exhaust and stray air conditioning stayed hot or cold in the sluggish air.


New York City, May 17, 2017 was originally published in The Awl on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.