midnight in squirrel hill

I’m sitting in Rachel and Rob’s house, watching the old Flash Gordon television programme and enjoying the a/c. Zebu the big brown Shar-Pei is no longer licking my arm, but is instead sitting in front of me and letting me scratch behind his ears.

I have eaten a lot of food that is bad for me — breakfast croissant sammich, hash browns, fries, cheeseburger, samosas, a mountain of rice and chicken tikka masala. I do not care. I am on vacation.

I’m about to fall asleep in Pittsburgh, resting after a day of driving with Olivia. Well, she drove and I opened tins of mixed-nut assortments, organized toll money, played DJ, tried to make interesting conversation.

The distance from Chicago to Pittsburgh is measurable in miles, hours, songs, Splenda-sweetened diet Cokes, traffic snarls caused by construction, general foolishness on the road, and rubbernecking. We drove past a particularly horrific looking scene somewhere in Ohio — an eighteen-wheeler under an overpass, a squad of cars from various law enforcement bodies, two news trucks surveying everything from the overpass, and a mangled piece of metal that was once a car hulking under the cover of a blue tarp. I hope the drive to Philadelphia tomorrow is considerably less eventful.

Pittsburgh is all hills and valleys. At night, you can see the lights of the inclinators mark a steep path from the houses atop the city to the office buildings and boarded-up storefronts below. There are three rivers, and one museum dedicated to the work of Andy Warhol. Two major universities, and more bridges than I can count.

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~ by Jasmine on August 13, 2005.

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