Without Internet access, writing becomes harder and harder to do. It's about a four-mile hike to the library up hill both ways because of the mid-nineties heat. Sometimes I feel as if I'm losing it, and then sometimes I feel like I'm only beginning to get it. I made the hike the other day to check my E-mail and to reconnect with the world.
I arrived about nine in the morning and was greeted by a sign, which said, "New Wednesday hours One to Eight P.M." My first thought was, Murphy's law. I had no choice, really; the library was located between a cemetery and a pre-school, so window shopping was out of the question. It was that damn Murphy's law again, caught between where I came from and where I was going. So I found one of the most valuable commodities available to the pedestrian in Georgia. I wrangled myself the best piece of shade money could buy.
I sat myself on the curb and steeled myself for the duration. It's only four hours - no longer than "Gone with the Wind," and by the time Ashley Wilkes is home from the war there should be some more people around. You see my plan to get there early was in anticipation of a crowd. Actually, I wasn't alone; there was a steady stream of SUVs and minivans returning books in the night deposit. Then there was an equal stream of soccer moms with kids in tow who would walk to the door and read the same sign that I had, who would then turn around with a grunt or a shrug and lament their fate of loading the kids back up in the Lexus.
These people were no competition to me; they had internet access, and they were coming only to amuse themselves, and if that avenue was closed they would merely seek another amusement. After about thirty minutes a late model silver Dodge pulled in and parked at the far end of the parking lot out in the no ding zone. An African American man, maybe thirty five to forty years old, got out and started walking towards the door. As he approached me I offered, "They're not open, one o'clock."