As I walked to find a place to sit, I realized that the city here rises and falls like a swell in the ocean from one river to the next. First there is low rise and a climax, the city then falls away to a lull, only to rise again, even higher until it wanes and reaches the next river. After this river, the buildings slowly swell again, but not as high as the first, in a similar fashion to how a following swell never quite reaches the height of the first, until it breaks against the beach. At a break between the buildings, there is usually a gust of wind, which tugs mercilessly at my hair, yet today, there is none. I have to say I am disappointed because it is usually a treat to take out the clips and pins and let my hair dance in the steady breeze coming off the river.
The streets turn from paved to cobblestone and I have to wonder if they have always been that way. Under the highway-bridge, the cars sound like the breaking of waves. For a moment, if you close your eyes you can almost hear the ocean breathing, and ignore the sirens to hear the gulls crying. The smell is intoxicating as you pass under the highway, and away from the assaulting smell of seaweed and fish, to the salty brine of the piers. Today it looks like the tide is changing. The river and the bay are locked in battle as one tries to flow and the other tries to rise. It reminds me of mornings, when my body tries to rise but mind desires to remain in the constant flow of a dream. Today the smell and feel of the sea seems to overcome the river, as people relax on the wooden chairs. They seemed to sense, as do the gulls who fly lower today, looking for bits to eat.
Sitting here I never noticed the small light house across the way, another remnant of what this place once was, a place where the city meets the sea. Yet today, it is just an obstacle to cross, or a place for tourists to gather. The city meets the sea here, but it seems more to scoff at the meeting and choose to pass over, under or alongside it. Only the tourists and diners seem to take some small interest in what's before them. I wonder if the river will ever be again what it once was, be able to recover from what we, as a race, have done to it. I mean, humans aren't forever, but a river is.