Sunday, March 7, 2010


What I did not tell George, much less Tina, was that that I was thinking of a time after the happy loose days in Greece and intense days below the Sahara, when I had come back to the city and, based on an agent’s backing, thought I was on the verge of becoming a published and famous novelist. After Greece I made a stab at San Francisco, where I played the new game Frisbee with momentarily celebrated literary figures, and then came back one summer day with a cheap ticket that meant I had zigzagged in propeller planes across the continent for 19 hours, and Judy, my obsession, had been waiting for me when I came into the terminal a Laguardia, standing just outside the rope barrier, close enough to touch, leaning in, cradling a bottle of scotch in her bare arms that gave me an instant erection. And we had gone to her and her husband’s VW beetle and shot through Queens and across Manhattan to the West Side Highway, along the docks where great ocean liners still came, and on to the Henry Hudson Hotel, which I knew as a place people stayed the night before sailing and hence a place it was unlikely anyone would look for us.

At a time, and not the first or last time, that I though I could stop time and would not have to go back.

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