Roll #31-33: The Epilogue

Updated: May 4, 2020

Eventually the sun begins to descend.

In vain, we chase the last light of day. We sail into the sunset hoping, praying to reverse, or at the very least, press pause on the inevitable. Another hour, minute, second.

The sun, unphased, continues its decent towards the horizon. With one last hurrah, the sky explodes with color. This last light pierces every earthly fiber.

A temporary goodbye.

Many sit and watch---appreciating, absorbing this last light and, with their eyes, whispering their goodbye in return.

Some are in such a rush that they miss the beauty. They miss the moment. They never say goodbye.

The warmth eventually dissipates, replaced by cooler tones of blue, purple, and pink.

We continue living our lives. We put on a smile and pursue our happiness. We have no other choice.

The wise become their own happiness.

The coolness is fleeting and is quickly enveloped in a shroud of darkness.

Before long, artificial light begins to appear. Faint at first, its strength grows until it sears our retinas.

The beauty machines twist and turn. Buttons. Levers. Dials. They create perfection but leave us scarred---a technicolor masterpiece of dissonance tattooed on our cerebrum.

Those who endure the chaos emerge from the other side stronger.

At the first opportunity, the weak flee. They do not look back. They do not question their decision. They do not wonder what could have been---they only wonder what's next in their journey of least resistance.

The pitter-patter of hurried feet become a chorus as they tap dance across the rock crystal floors---their echos resonating through countless corridors.

It's five past the hour.

A man pauses mid-step to gaze at the clock.

He takes a deep breath and just when it feels like time has stood still, the minute hand charges towards six. His foot reconnects with the floor and the escape continues.

And with the blink of an eye, he, and his fellow travelers, become a distant memory---ghosts.

It started as an itch and ended with a rebirth.

It had been over ten years since I was last in New York City. It's hard to explain but while I love the enormity of the city---the countless opportunities that it presents---it is, at the same time, overwhelming. As someone who loves observing, New York is a haven. As seasons change, so do the people---their faces, their clothes, their humor, their transportation. It is, like us, constantly evolving---constantly learning from its mistakes---constantly trying to better itself.

I have anxiety just thinking about the crowded ferries, streets, and subways, yet despite this uneasiness, I can't wait to go back.

Camera: Kodak Retina IB + Olympus Stylus 120

Film: FujiFilm 200 + Kodak UltraMax 400

When: September 2019

Where: New York City

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