Slate grey and electric tape blue. Speckled with drywall dust and that rusty light that lingers for a minute more than the Chicago sunset, the down-stuffed sleeping bag curls in Bloomingdale’s stone shadow. A translucent orange curtain undulates against the Lake Michigan wind. A time-worn, envy-green Hoover leans against a barren wall. Crinkled grocery bags coat the closet floor. Jewel. Treasure Island. The Old Town Spice House. In the far corner stands a solitary black suitcase. Shockingly soon, its gaping belly will be stuffed with crisp cotton clothes, bent-paged books, and the curled cables that will keep me connected with friends, family, and the wider world.
To dismantle brick by brick, what outside observers could term an idyllic existence in a bustling midwestern city, in favor of winding roads and unknown tarmacs, is a decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. The distant condor’s call can’t compensate for the on-going ache of antibodies and odd vaccines. Nor will it comfort you when cherished belongings buckle against misdirected pressure. When devoting your paycheck to the purchase of packing tape and bulky brown boxes you’ll wonder why savings accounts aren’t equipped with drain stops. You’ll wonder if the Andes are worth the agonies associated with putting friendships and internet streaming services on momentary hold.