That’s all I can see now when I stop at the intersection of East Josephine and Avenue A.
Before tonight, I always came to a full stop at that corner – never rolling to a stop as I’m apt to do, but braking and pulling forward just slow enough to provide me a few extra seconds to gaze on the scenes in each window, like a painting.
In one, there would be two women, perhaps my age or a little older, smiling and talking over dinner and a glass of wine. In another, a couple, most likely both coming from their hectic jobs downtown for a relaxing dinner. And then in the corner window, a table for four, friends nodding to one another as they dined on the simple fusion food at Liberty Bar.
Those windows and the scenes they held gave me moments of liberty from the duties of motherhood, which nearly every day take me past this old favorite of a restaurant on my way to the children’s school. I played the “imagine” game, making up stories about the people at each table and why they were there, or just took comfort in knowing that, here on this quiet corner of downtown, people were enjoying a nice dinner together, even if I could not. I could always count on that.
But, now, true to the announcement they made months ago, the restaurant appears to have vacated this leaning, old building in favor of another piece of downtown property. Far from this spot where I found a kind of momentary freedom that I will dearly miss.