Thursday, April 1, 2010


I wish my camera had sound. Actually, according to Mr. Betty, it does have sound — I could shoot video, if I tried, if I figured it out, if I bothered to read the manual, if I had any interest or inclination beyond taking snapshots, which I don't. (That's me chiding myself , not Mr. Betty chiding me, just for the record.)

I'm wishing for sound, as I wish I could share the sound ... of water pouring, rushing, or at least trickling (in the lucky cases) from virtually every basement down virtually (not virtually, really) every street via hoses, large and small, into drains that look tame enough from a distance, even a few feet, but from here (right here!) look and sound more like scarily-strong waterfalls crashing into that creepy netherworld beneath. It's nice to know the fire department is equipped for such special hazards; seriously, they're parked nearby (right there!) with an inflatable raft atop their Special Hazards vehicle.

And that's the other sound: the sound of pumps pumping, motors motoring, power powering in every direction — can you hear it?? Then, as I turn the corner, from Spring Street (aptly named) uphill toward Division, it's quiet. I love Division ... Street, that is.

There's a spot on Division — along which Mr. Betty and I walk with great frequency to/from the movies or restaurants (or bars) or wherever we happen to be walking — where you can stand in the middle of the street, look left then right, not for traffic (there is no traffic) but at signs attached to buildings on either side of the street, and imagine connections between people who may have been divided ... then connected ... or not.

Neighborhoods are funny like that: people might be divided, then connected, or not. It's hard to know from the outside — and after a century or two — if people, events and related structures were really connected, really did pull together under extreme conditions, but the signs seem (to us) to suggest so.

And, really, Spring Street is aptly named ... for the town spring that lay (still lies??) somewhere beneath that confusing five-way intersection at the end, at the light, at the gas station.