I’d spent just two nights in New York City before I was on the road, destination Maine.
It was going to be a long trip, though I just didn’t know how long it actually was until I was on it. The weird thing a lot of folks back in Nigeria don’t realize is how big the United States actually is. And if you can comprehend that, then imagine how big a country like China or even Russia might be compared to the States.
But as I was saying, I got on a Greyhound bus and rode it to Boston. The lady whom I was intending to meet was going to meet me there. The ride was lovely, though I got to complain about the college grads in the bus with me that for some reason couldn’t stop chattering every time.
Five hours of being on the road, your ass is bound to feel like a slate. But it was a cool trip, never being on such a cool trip like that before. And Boston sure looked inviting from the window station. Would have loved to head outside and explore, except when you’ve traveled halfway across the world from Africa, the last thing you want to do is get lost in the city. Much better getting lost in a jungle. At least in there, the lions are bound to keep you company . . . if they don’t think of coming after you.
The lady who’d traveled down to meet me was there, and we shook hands first then gave each other a hug. Her husband came with her: he’s an ex-Navy African-American, and you never would have though of it from the way he looked. It would have being great to stop somewhere and get something to eat, but we weren’t done with our travel. We were still a long way from Maine, and the ride sounded like it would be even longer. A good thing we weren’t taking no bus.
As the wife drove and the husband and I made conversation, I thought of the lines of a Lauryn Hill song, and scribbled down these words on a notebook I carried with me.
Through every barrio
My feet pounded on
On wet rainy sky:
Amtrak or Greyhound
Passing scenery I waved at
Smiling faces, though some doleful eyes
We sleep, dream and cry
Tomorrow passing by
I come to you
I come for you.