Paul awakes to an empty studio apartment. The alarm clock blasts away like a cattle bell. Outside the night still remains in the sky. When he prepares himself to leave the light of day just begins to peak through the clouds. Paul sees this beautiful sight from atop of his stairs. As he enjoys the sky, two other tenants close their doors and head to work also. Everyone sees each other but nothing is said. Paul remembers the days when he used to say, “Good Morning,” to each person he crossed. Now, he has forgotten why he stopped. However Paul feels fine about this days.
In the car, Paul listens to his news show giving reports from all over the world. He can’t help but feel how far away all these events seem to his life. He imagines traveling to the middle east, witnessing the news first hand. How exciting and fresh it must be. Unfortunately the distance is too far for his mind to comprehend. Paul sees the amount of work it would take preparing a trip, covering things at home, and his job, what about his job? How would he make it without his job?
The car slips down the dark tunnel into the parking structure. It is illuminated by dull light, which gives it a very stale feeling. Paul sighs, and readies his mind for another day. Between the levels the sunlight breaks through and shines directly into his face. In that moment, he allows the warmth to wash over him like a hot spring. He forgets his place in the world for one brief second. It is then that he wonders what is going on in the places of the world.
More cars enter the lot. Each one parks in perfect formation to the next. The people leave their vehicles in the safety of the dull light. The sunlight moves on and Paul feels the cold air once again. He thinks, why am I here? When he enters the office, people walk by, each one moving by like a robot, no need for salutations, no need for interactions, all business. Paul sighs once again. He makes it over to his tiny cubical and sees the desk he’s manned for years.
The desk is barren no pictures, no people, no travels, nothing but a full inbox. It actually begins to anger him. He shouts, “I want out.” “Out from what?” A very pleasant voice asks. Standing behind him is a very attractive woman wearing a smile. “Out from what,” she asks again. In his head, Paul sees images from the middle east, as if he is there. He feels very light at this moment. A growing smile appears from beneath his face and he can’t stop it. “Hi, Good Morning,” Paul says.
Written by Erik Niel