California Dreamin' with a New York State of Mind
Can't get NYC out of my mind today. Can't get the picture of my family sitting across from me on the A train headed downtown. It's cold and windy here, and it likely isn't much different there under that crowded sky but the view and attitude is markedly different. Similarly, I can't stop flipping from the feel of Bryant Park to the smell of Southern California and the feel of September San Clemente sand beneath my feet. To say that I'm torn today would be an incredible understatement.
Shouldn't I be living in the moment? At least more than what I am? Most days it feels better to drift off and dream. I'm sure I'm not all that different from the guy my old elementary school report cards described. "Must try harder...needs to concentrate...MUST stop daydreaming... I haven't changed all that much.
I've been a daydreamer ever since I was a small child. I found stories in the sky or in the wood grain of a bookshelf, certainly in the pages of books or between commercials on the television. I grew up and found places that only fed those fires and when I learned that they didn't have to stay just dreams then my chances of ever becoming something of a success were dashed. As long as there are empty places on far away beaches where fathers stand and watch their children skim across Pacific waves, or as long as there are quiet numbered side streets that pour out into parks as big as hometowns I'll be thinking of better places. The day I don't I hope I'm ready to check out.
If I stumbled into a fortune I could guarantee you could find me without as much as a note left on a cluttered table. You'd need to search the stretch of continent south of Los Angeles and all the way to Northern San Diego County. In fact you could probably just drop by the Starbucks at 300 S El Camino Real in San Clemente on any given morning and find me soaking up some beans and sun before the day gets too old.
Soaking up some post-Rose Bowl winter sun in San Clemente... 2005
If I wasn't there then you could maybe slip on down the coast and check that chuck of beach between Encinitas and Leucadia. If all else fails I'd recommend jumping on that A train and get off on the West Fourth Street station in Greenwich Village. Swing through Washington Square and keep a sharp eye out. I'll be the guy playing checkers with my daughter on a bench near the Memorial Arch...come say Hi.
I suppose there's always a chance you could find me at Rudy's Bar at 627 9th Ave near 44th Street in Hell's Kitchen...sometime after 9pm...or maybe hanging out on some balcony with a city view at the Hollywood Hills Hotel high above Sunset...I dunno...You just won't find me in the places I find myself when I'm not daydreaming. One thing's for sure, if we ever do go, there'll be no note.