Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014 @ 7:56 pm
I sit on the wide windowsill in my hotel room, 23rd floor, in a skyscraper on the edge of a prairie city. It's night and dark, and the city spreads out in grids of amber lights. I sit there in pajama pants and a tank top, drinking coffee-maker tea, laptop humming, the faint rhythm of passing traffic. The horizon is endless and flat, and I feel like I'm drowning in the vastness of the prairie.
I explore the hotel alone. Up to the rooftop pool, slinking in my bare feet around the tiled pool deck, one man on a treadmill facing the window, running impotently towards that endless horizon.
I'd taken a taxi from the airport to downtown. Forty minutes alone with a driver, and instead of the awkward silence I ask him everything that I can. What is that bridge? I realized as we passed the construction sign that I did design work for it at the last company. I found out about his background (Turkish) and his family (in Toronto) and how he feels about the 'limo' drivers (it's a scam). The sun is heavy in the sky and the weather unseasonably hot. There's a haze on the city, and the traffic is heavy around us on the freeway.
In the morning, I eat breakfast in the hotel lobby. Men in suits reading the paper, drinking coffee. I walk to the office, air crisp, office towers reflecting flat autumn light.
This life continues, remarkably. I never expected that this is what engineering would look like.