Have you ever been on one of those road trips where you're driving all night and it feels like there's nothing left in the universe but you and the road? When time loses all meaning? When past and future merge into an endless now? Now imagine you're in a boat, moving through the flooded streets. That was the feeling I was aiming for in this passage.
Today's blog was a little delayed in getting posted because the activities for the Sirens Studio sessions started early and I'd managed to sleep up to my alarm, thank goodness. I've written up the next FAQ blog for later in the week as well, then I'll be set until next Tuesday. Sirens is a different experience this year -- I really do know a lot of other attendees this time, not only from last year, but from connecting at other events over the year. I'm swinging back toward thinking maybe I'll come back next year.
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By the time it was full dark, we’d worked a path from the rivermen’s street across the warehouse district with its tenements and taverns. Then we set up lanterns at either end of the boats and kept going. I could only imagine how small a part of the lower city we’d seen so far.
Throughout the night we moved along dark waterways that had once been streets, looking for watchers who signaled where to tie up for our next stop. Then there would be another crowded room, just like the last one.
It was easier after dawn when it was light again, though there’d been hours when I thought it would never come. I stopped remembering faces. I stopped remembering almost everything, at least, how it connected together. There are bits and pieces I still recall. It’s like one of those paintings that has so many little details it looks like real life, but it’s flat and fixed, with nothing moving. I remember how, more and more, the word had run ahead of us. Especially at night, as the oars splashed slowly down the street, feeling for the depth of the water to make sure we didn’t run aground, there would be a string of lanterns held up to light our way and show us the safe path.