A few years ago I’d had this unfortunate idea that a red eye from LAX to JFK was a great plan. I boarded a plane around 10pm in Los Angeles, alongside a 747 full of business travelers headed for jittery East Coast morning meetings.
It wasn’t so much that I irrationally figured that I could sleep on the plane, but I illogically decided that if I don’t really sleep well anyway, I might was well be not sleeping well on an airplane. When I arrived in New York 6 hours plus time change later, I hadn’t slept for a second. Although the decision to watch The Lovely Bones just after take off probably contributed to my lack of drowsiness.
By the time a subway ride and then a cab deposited me in Chelsea I was tired to catastrophic levels. Which, in the land of most girls means borderline weepy and slightly irrational. Finding out my hotel wasn’t ready for check in and realizing that my only option for sleep was cuddling up with the homeless man near the stairwell, I decided coffee was a necessity. And by necessity I quite literally mean as a route to avoid either crying hysterically or falling asleep on top of a man who smells like hot dogs and old cheese.
I stumbled into a coffee shop and begged for coffee. “Anything else?” The husky Brooklyn dweller spat at me from behind the counter.
“Umm, I…need…uh…the…” I did manage to point at a crumb cake.
“You want duh cake? Fuh breakfast?” Thank god it was just judgmental an rhetorical, he didn’t expect and answer and I couldn’t have given an intelligible one. He thrust it towards me with the coffee. I sat down at the counter, my bag still over my shoulder and started to devour it all. He smiled, one hand on his apron covered hip, “Not bad, huh?”
I nodded, words were still hours away from me.