Mia: Shaken Not Stirred

The true life stories of a NYC female.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Don't Fear The Reaper

A lot of people think of New York as this strictly glass and concrete city but this isn’t true. All over the city hidden in plain view are parks and gardens. It’s typical once the warm weather arrives to see people spread out all over the grass taking in the sun.

This was the scenario the other day when it first hit 80 degrees here in the city. On my way to meet a friend I passed a businessman on his way into the park take-out lunch in hand. Instead of sitting on a bench he headed straight for a spot underneath a blossoming cherry tree. He had a lot of company that day the park was packed with people.

Hours later at the height of rush hour I was on my way back home and passed the same park. The businessman was still there under the tree. He was lying on his back one leg bent, his arms cushioning his head and appeared to be napping; at least it looked that way although it was hard to tell because of his dark sunglasses. Besides him were the remnants of his lunch and his shoes with his socks stuffed into them.

I found it kind of odd that he would still be there, I guess I was not the only one. As I waited for the bus across the street I saw as a couple of police officers approached the man. They said something to the man but got no response. The cops looked at each other and shook their heads. One of the officers then pulled out his night stick and attempted to startle the man but got no reaction from him. Then he began nudging the man with his night stick. It then became obvious that the man was dead. The officers called who ever it is that they call in these situations and stood watch over the man. By the time my bus arrived a small crowd had gathered.

Riding the bus home I thought about the man and about the family that must have been waiting for him at home unaware that he wouldn't be returning. I thought about how happy he must have felt to be in the park. The feel of the grass under his feet, the smell of the blooming flowers drifting around him every time the gentle breeze kicked up. I thought about him eating his lunch underneath the shade of a beautiful tree on a picture perfect sunny day. I thought about how despite being surrounded by all that beauty death had managed to find him.

I guess what my mother says is true, fearing death is pointless because when the reaper comes for you nothing will dissuade him from his job. Even a beautiful day when dying seems so wrong and unfair.

Song: Don't Fear The Reaper :: Blue Oyster Cult

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