I like going to work. I mean, I don’t like getting up every single day at a certain time, or the time that work takes from the things I like to do, but I like the action of going to work.
In the morning I like the personal time, listening to my ipod while walking down the hill to catch a train. I like being inside my head for the half hour that it takes to get to my office. Sometimes I read, but mostly I just listen to music and observe. Sometimes I get to work too quickly.
If I didn’t work in an office downtown, I would never have seen the guy on the train platform who looked exactly like Brad Pitt and wore an expensive grey suit. I would never have seen the big woman with the hairy upper lip that pushed past me with an orange leather bag that was bigger than my dog. I would not see the lesbian couples who make out in the middle of the train just about every morning. I wouldn’t have spiky haircuts to consider, or piercings, or tattoos. I wouldn’t be able to play that game I play in my head, where I guess where the other train riders are going. That guy with the perfect hair, spiked just so, with the squared-off shoes and the black-framed glasses, he’s an architect. The tired woman with the heavy backpack full of books, well-dressed but with disheveled hair: law student. The woman with the giant orange bag: city employee.
I like the vacant, sleepy look the passengers on the train have, how we tolerate each other being so close only because we are all so lost in our own thoughts.
I like the purposeful feeling of walking from the train station to the office. Tall buildings, steel and glass. I often look up. I like seeing the other purposeful-looking people striding toward work, or a meeting, or the coffee shop. I like watching our reflections in store windows.
Sometimes I stop for coffee before I get to the office, and I like that too, the smell of the beans, the energy of the people behind the counter. I like listening to the complexity of some people’s orders: grande nonfat half-caff no foam mocha no whip. Soy milk, caramel, double shots, extra shots. Room for cream. I like the cashier’s shaved head.