He sat on the metro with Southern California flickering through the window as the train wended its way to Downtown Los Angeles. For a moment the present receded and the memory of a day came to him. It was a day he had spent in Laguna.
He had gone for a five mile run then spent the afternoon basking in the sun with an occasional swim in the cool clear lucid ocean water. And he was young, probably 28 or 29. This may have been the peak day of his life.
He was in such a tranquil state that as he sat back reading at his brother’s apartment on Viejo Street, with its wall to wall ocean view, he heard in his mind the most beautiful harmonies. His mind, expressing the satisfying mood he was in, spontaneously generated the most ethereal transcendent music. It was an ideal day.
The memory receded just about as he arrived at his destination, the Vermont Sunset station. He got off the metro and walked to Sunset Boulevard. There, right on the street, people were encamped, tents pitched on pavement, the paraphernalia of life strewn about them.
He thought of this memory. It was now malignant because it came to him often and both he and California had changed. Such a day could not be repeated now. He was twice that age and that California, the California of the golden dream, no longer existed.
This haunted him as crossed the street onto Hollywood Boulevard, and continued on his way.
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Photo Credit: Flickr/Don Graham