Cab Ride

In the monotony of black luggage that circled the carousel, my tired eyes searched for the stained ribbon that signaled my ownership. “That’s Boston. And we’re growing now, too. Construction everywhere,” said the cab driver as he slammed the trunk closed. “We’re booming.” I could certainly feel it. I wasn’t sure if it was Boston so much as the thrill of moving to a new city. The hyperawareness as I searched for everything that made this city different from my own. I was always exceptionally good at those spot the differences games in the Highlights magazines.

Everything was the same. Glistening skyscrapers laughed in my face, my reflection flickering in their windows. Betrayal scratched at the nape of my neck. I moved from San Francisco to Boston in search of something “different,” a “change of pace,” only to find myself cowering in the coffee shop that most resembled my favorite back home.

Finally, the cab driver dropped me off at my hotel room, whose carpet matched that of my apartment building’s lobby. A faint scent of mildew immediately clung to my clothing, and I tried to shake it off along with the regret that crawled up my spine. I hauled my single bag onto my bed, untangled my faded orange ribbon from underneath, and unzipped the bag completely. When I threw the cover open, I recognized none of the contents. Silken blouses, starched shirts, high heels – the clothes of someone who had her life together – none of it was mine. I untied the ribbon and slipped it into my pocket. I must’ve grabbed someone else’s bag.

Gina Cusing ’16

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