Basically, I just didn’t like the ambiance of Latino america today so I left it for the next place on the list: Alum Rock Branch. So what if I have to bike 5 miles? Library closes at 8 anyways. I have time.
So I head off to the land past downtown and I-680. There I find a more densely Latino and black population. Don’t mistake me for being prejudiced, but after being checked out by a middle aged black man earlier that day I’m kinda wary.
The Alum Rock neighborhood is weird. This block looks like I passed the border to Mexico, the other is like I never left Westgate.
Moving on, the Alum Rock Branch Library. It definitely stands out from its surroundings.
Like every library, it’s pretty awesome. The Children’s area is populated by cute little plastic palm trees and blue clouds.
But I never linger there for long. I plop myself down on a comfortable couch in the quiet study room and start THE TRAVELER by Daren and Daniel Simkin.
[[SPOILERS: The story is about a boy who wants to find out what he wants to spend all his time on. So he packs up his suitcase with hours and minutes and months and travels across the world until one day he comes home an old man and realizes he wants to spend his remaining time with the pretty girl he left at home. But when he opens the suitcase where he kept his time, only a measly month falls to the ground and several seconds trickle to his feet. And only now does it hit him. You cannot pack up time and save it. And so he lived the rest of his month with his friends and family. It wasn’t what he planned for, but he was happy. END SPOILERS:]]
The short story really resonated in me because, heck I’m pretty sure it’s what I’m doing right now!
Because the reason I’m going to all these libraries is because I don’t know what else to do. I’m searching for a reason right now.
Later, I tried to do homework but every sentence of SIDDHARTHA was a melodic harp that lulled me further to sleep.
I have no dreams of late. It’s all black. A dark abyss. I’m searching for a star to look upon.
Finally, I decide I can do nothing more here and head out the door. It’s sunny outside. Good weather. The breeze is warm.
All that’s missing is… my bike.
My bike with the tattered basket and pink lock. Linh’s bike with the tired brakes and rusty chain. Where did it go? Who did it go to? A deep pool of anger surged within me but I tried to stay as calm as possible. My eyes radiated anger. I resorted to fast-walking to the nearest Alum Rock lightrail station approximately 0.8 miles from the library.
“The AUDACITY! The POMPOUSNESS! The THIEF!”
I screamed in my head that it was not so but Alum Rock is far from Cottle. The hour-long ride home leaves me exhausted and drained of anger. Now I'm just freakin' depressed. At the end of the day, I just don't care anymore. My legs ache. My feet hurt. I take off my flip flops and walk home barefoot the rest of the mile. Through grass, cement, pine leaves. It's the true hobbit experience you know.
It's like we're at the verge of Mirkwood Forest. The horses cannot go any further, nor can my bike help me. The band of dwarves and hobbit traveled great leagues on foot. Why can't I go a few miles?
Even without my bike, I'll still continue my journey. It's a duty to you readers and a duty to myself.
With that being said, tomorrow I am headed for Berryessa Branch Library! Fighting!