On Snow in New York City

At the bus stop we stamp our feet to stay warm. The snow is falling huge and heavy.

“I’ve been waiting a half hour,” an athletic guy says to no one in particular.

“I can’t take much more of this,” a middle-aged woman responds. She’s shaking so hard underneath her coat, at first I think she’s laughing.

But she isn’t. None of us are.

“Should we walk to the next stop?” I ask.

“I’m going to get a cab,” the guy says.

I haven’t been here long–at the bus stop for only five minutes, but working in New York City for only five months. Both my budget and my inexperience in cab-wrangling makes this cab-luxury seem impossible to hail.

NYC taxi snow

The guy sloshes over the snow-banked curb. His 200 pound stance stares down a 2000 pound cab.

“We’re all going to the ferries, right?” he says. “Get in. I’ll pay the fare.”

The middle-aged woman looks at the dirty snow bank, looks at her dress shoes, shrugs, and plunges in. I follow in the path opened for me.

We squeeze into the back of the cab, and the snow on our clothes turns into melting moisture.

The cab jolts forward.

“My glasses are fogged,” says the woman.

“The windows are fogged, too,” I say.

“Thank God!” the guy says as the cab swerves and then skids to stop.

The woman starts shaking. At first I think she’s still cold. But then I realize she’s laughing.

We all are.

At the terminal I try to offer money, but the others pay the full fare and run to their ferries before I can even get to my wallet.

“Thank you,” I say, to no one in particular.

A snowflake falls on my cheek. It’s huge. And heavy.

And warm.


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