I push the door of the diner open and step onto a street that half an hour ago was deserted but now is filled with traffic of all kinds from rickshaws to horses, yellow cabs to yellow Nikes, beer trucks to garbage (just piles not trucks). All are immensely in a hurry and all are utterly stuck in the usual rush hour morass, though the horses manage to pick their way through traffic. Why people don't just abandon the damn things to rust and drain down the sewers, I'll never know.
I deposit my wallet in the velcro pocket on my right leg. Retuck my shirt. Check to see if the silver chain is secure - feel the spider scamper about my pocket as I tug on it.
As I walk down the street I notice three things that I have not noticed recently. The City smells like honey. There are church bells tolling in the distance. The flower boxes are blooming.
There are other people walking of course. Many in a mad rush. Some more slowly with their lattes in tow. Some slumped to the sidewalk in an alcoholic stupor. Many fashionistas.
I give a beggar a dollar and am immediately accosted by a well dressed fellow: "he'll just use it to buy liquor. You're only encouraging him."
He fixes his eyes on me waiting for a response.
So I offer him a dollar too.