Coming in from Seattle Sacramento is a sleepy pocket of warmth. from the plane you see all the squares mapped out, the tractors chugging away, plowing the earth, their columns of smoke rising above them like a sleepy tornado.
I land and regina has texted me that she’s leaving to pick me up from the airport on her lunchbreak. Asking a friend to pick you up from the airport is less a favor and more a validation of friendship. As I leave the terminal she pulls up, bubbling with happiness, it feels so good to be wanted, for someone to be happy you arrived. I’m dropped off at the Naked Lounge, a coffeeshop I’d never been to before. The barista, hung over as he is, serves me my coffee outside on this beautiful relaxed sunny day in Sacramento.
No more than five minutes later, who else should appear the coffeeshop but Jane Cockerham. She deigns so say “Hello” and for the next two hours sits ten feet away from me completely ignoring me. Jane has always been the mean girl from high school and this is more than she’s said to me last 8-10 years since freshman year. I find her current denial of my existence is reassuring. It feels so good and so right. So… natural.
I have come from a place where I feel strange, lost, growing, hanging out with Aviva and her friends in an unfamiliar city and I have returned to a city where I cannot walk for 5 minutes without seeing someone I know. Aviva told me that going back I’d feel so comfortable: “because here you’ve been growing.” She was right. Sacramento fits me into it’s stuff, slow, summery glove.