I visited the Sixth Street Viaduct today. It’s being demolished and replaced because it’s not safe in our shake happy state. I could go into the North American and Pacific plates and the mysteries of Alkali Silica Reaction, but I’m sure not everyone finds it as fascinating as I do. My earth science geek out can wait.
It was a field trip suggested by a friend from high school. He’s been the reason I’ve been taking so many field trips lately. I told him I was staying home and job hunting as my latest career move and I conserve gas for the necessary outings. He pushed me to just enjoy myself and I’m really glad he did. I love my field trips and I’ve found so much healing along beaches. My next trip is Zuma because he says it’s his favorite and he makes it sound amazing. Tomorrow looks promising. I can job hunt using apps between selfies and iPhoneography.
He’s one of those friends that always leaves me in better shape than he found me in. Every so often he wants to know how I’m doing and he gives me just enough push to encourage me while guiding me. He’s a salt of the earth kind of man with just enough sweetness to let me know he’s always going to be a heartbreaker. We talk about my kids and he reminds me this will be okay in the end because he has an optimistic streak even I’m envious of. I remembered how shy he was and he reminded me it’s because I was always flirting with him. I had forgotten about that, but I’ve always had a thing for guys in football uniforms so I wouldn’t put it past me. It wasn’t intentional and he didn’t make me feel bad about it in reminding me. We’re just friends but there are moments when he’ll call me love, or ma, or princess and I feel loved and not so thrown away. He was the only one I wanted to talk to when I was having chest pain and eyeing that hot Italian ER doctor.
He suggested I check out the bridge and I asked if I could just wait to see the pictures he takes, because writing screenplays and capturing artful pictures is his thing. It was one of those moments where he was calling me a princess. In my defense, he had just suggested I don’t carry a large bag because it would make me a target and I was thinking about needing an escort. In most of what I do, I don’t have an escort. I was thinking about not going because there is construction dust. It’s a hard hat area . . . full of construction workers . . . Okay it was the thought of that last bit that had me sold. His warning on my mind had kept me in my car for the most part. I drove around and under the bridge, but I only got out of the car for a quick couple of minutes because I was wigging out about muggers and rapists at 10 in the morning lurking around dilapidated and graffitied buildings that were crumbling and abandoned in a quiet area in Central Los Angeles.
On my way home I thought about the bridge being destroyed. I watched the machines pick at the concrete for a while. It is falling apart and unsafe, but it still took so much work to chisel it away. They used water hoses in jetted streams along with heavy machinery. For such a large task, there weren’t that many construction workers.
It made me think of my life in the last year or so. There were times when structures were being demolished and it felt entirely lonely. The beauty I saw in the past was being destroyed and it was hard to watch and painful to live through. I didn’t use a hose, but there were plenty of tears to help wash away the debris. I couldn’t imagine what my life would look like as my own. My team was tiny.
Rebuilding started and I missed the foundation being poured because I was so busy missing the old me. My construction and support team has gotten larger. There have been a few men working hard to build me up and restore my confidence. I may have even used one or two as a tool in strengthening my self esteem. I sometimes feel bad about that. There has been so much undeserved family support. The audience that watched me fall apart under the loss of a marriage I couldn’t imagine living without watch me grow in silence, or offer quiet acknowledgement that they’re glad I’m no longer begging for another chance to prove I’m willing to beg for scraps. They stop in from time to time and have watched my frame being erected. They’re curious now that the wiring and plumbing are in and the mudders are sealing seams in my drywall. I’m feeling stronger and I can see my amazing when I look in the mirror and that is pretty epic. I can see what the architect envisioned when the structure was destroyed because of the first major cracks from a slipping foundation.