I made a plan and actually was able to follow though with it….to a certain degree that is. What was in my power to control, I controlled.
I left as early as I could to make it downtown before the streets were closed off on the parade route.
The train was straining at the seams with the amount of people packed into each car. Seriously, could not move my elbows to nudge the lady off of me who mistook me for her own personal leaning post!
I had to walk in the street, with the cars, because the sidewalks were overflowing with stationery people who had claimed their parade-watching spot.
At this point it was only 7:15 AM. The parade started at 9 AM.
Lunchtime arrives and I step outside the front of the building only to see hoards of people moving on the sidewalks, every which way but up.
My stomach was lurching at the sight. I had my headphones on and the music loud but could still hear the noise of all the traffic and people talking and laughing…stampeding.
I left work at 1:20 PM, weaved my way through the crowded sidewalks to the train station. The platform was wall to wall people with officers from the transit authority trying to maintain some kind of controlled chaos. Very much like in the photos of the Beijing train stations except everyone is wearing a freakin’ cowboy hat!
This is one time I’m happy to be so small…I worked my way to the front of the crowded platform to get on my train….which was still packed even if going in the opposite direction of the Stampede grounds.
The doors shut and the intense heat and horrible smell of humanity sweating up a storm assaulted me. I felt weak all over.
When the train was moving a slight breeze moved the heavy air. The relief was short-lived because it is not far from one station to the next.
A 10 minute train ride took 30 minutes. Felt like days!
I’m finally home. Shades drawn to block the heat from the sun. Slight cool breeze wafting in steadily. I changed into my shorts and poured myself a tall drink.
Sometimes, the only thing that helps is a good stiff drink. Straight up with a twist of lime.
(I do not advocate using alcohol to deal with your problems in any way)