Being in the streets is being in transit. One gets the feeling of being nowhere, yet not being lost. As we take a familiar street, our awareness turns on autopilot, and our consciousness drifts.
We start to walk in suspended reality, as if the city is melting into inexistence. We implode in our private thoughts, and on our faces surface the constantly shifting landscape of human emotion.
The street is the medium of our transformation from one character to another, from one place to another. While en route, the street allows us to be no one. A banker, a construction worker, a student, a preacher, between leaving and arriving – all are dislocated from the city and its structure. We go through a phase of being deconstructed, of being not quite oneself yet. In the street, we return momentarily to our primal state of mind, back as we were in the caves, constantly finding other uses for fire, full of intuition.
The commonplace. The ordinary. In our city's streets, where familiarity assaults our senses, we take refuge inside our heads. I heard a poet say that it is now a luxury to allow ourselves a time to worry, a time to brood. The streets give us that luxury. While we have not yet reached our destination, while we have come loose from the grips of our city, we set out to become a tourist in what has become a foreign place that is our soul.