Stalled on Interstate 78
The Sun had taken the day off. Skipped town and found something better to do with it's 5 billion or so years till expiry. The dockland and distant skyline are painted in coal dust coloured rain.
The yellow cab surged and halted. The oxygen starved interior made me feel nauseous. There was a chance I would vomit. The cab had done it's duty and felt ready to be crushed and forgotten. The multitude of bodies that polished it's rear seat to a high gloss gone.
The drivers seat a nest of requirements. Photographs of smiling children, the madonna, a beaded seat cover and an empty coffee cup. He sat slumped against the B pillar, his skin washed red with the glow of resting tail lights. The traffic on interstate 78 ground to a halt and the half hour trip into Manhattan was going to take an hour and a half. I needed to open a window. Waves of nausea rolled up through my gut and broke hard behind my temples. I wondered why, in 2018 a task as simple as moving a body from an airport to a hotel had become an act that was almost medieval. It seemed like technology had given our lives one thin coat of hope for a more organised and efficient future. Underneath it's glowing binary surface planet earth was grinding to a damp smoggy halt outside Jersey City.
The cab driver apologised for the delay and chuckled, looking at me in the rear view mirror. "You OK? You look whiter than you need to brother" He wound my window down from the button on his door and blasted me with opaque spring air. In the panorama of the oversized rearview mirror I could see his eyes crease into a smile, he slouched down against the B piller again, resigned to the idea that sitting there, waiting for the day to come when he could sell his cab medallion and build a new nest for himself in a Jersey walk up.
The traffic thinned out and the car sped forward sucking us both into the lurid yellow glow of the Holland tunnel.