Once I got home and finished unpacking the car that looked like the Beverly Hillbillies', it was time for a quick run to the store to get some groceries, including fruits for my husband and fat-free milk for Geni. While driving to the store on a Friday evening, I ran into a little bit of end-of-rush-hour traffic and was actually glad for it. That's how much of a city girl I am.
Give me cars, give me bustling streets and hurried people, and I'm home. In the woods, I am a stranger and I'm always on edge and stressed out because there's always some crawling thing trying to crawl up me or some buzzing thing trying buzz itself into my ear. In the city, I'm in my element.
After the grocery stop I walked the dogs in the approaching twilight through our familiar streets and they also were glad to mark up every spot they hadn't had a chance to smell for a long week.
Two young boys played with a football in a neighbor's yard and as the ball flew into the middle of the road they looked at each other in dismay. One of them murmured with some evident self-doubt that he'd climb over the fence and make a run for it.
"Don't worry, don't worry, I'll get it," I said, and strode confidently to retrieve the lost ball. But as I attempted a pass at the eagerly awaiting boys, who were trying to elbow each other out of the way to see who would catch it, my throw was so lame that they looked at each other unbelieving. The ball, thrown with little aim and even less force, had failed to go over the fence, as I had hoped, and instead fallen flat right in front of it. I could read their minds as they both thought, "But that was such an easy throw!"
"I'm a girl, ok? I don't throw footballs!" I said, laughing, as I picked up the offending ball and handed it to one of them. I realized immediately that I'd likely taken about 100 years off the feminist movement with my statement. That I'm "a girl" doesn't mean, of course, that I can't throw a football. But, alas, this girl sure can't. They murmured their thanks and continued their game, as if nothing had happened.
I walked on with a smile still enjoying the feeling of being back in my cityscape with cars in the main avenue rushing home as evening fell, little boys playing football in cramped yards, and my dogs and I happy to be home again.