Never would I have thought this before, nor even have typed this on my computer.

I usually walk everyday to get my exercise. On this day I picked walking  north up Park Avenue. I did this because there were less people to navigate around, and Park was virtually empty except for the occasional ambulance or delivery truck. After all, I was aware of keeping the six foot distance from others. Too, I chose this avenue because of its stillness.

While walking, I heard a noise that was music to my ears. Amtrak was traveling south as I was walking north. To hear the noise of the purring of the engine and the screeching whirls of the wheels on the track reminded me that yes, I was still in New York City. Having experienced virtually no cars on the streets, no airplanes roaring above, has made this city feel like I was in the desert because of the lack of usual noise. Yes, this is Manhattan in its stillness, but an unusual stillness never before seen or heard.

I cannot wait for all the usual noisy activity to begin. Sounds of people shouting, children playing ball in the parks, motorcycles revving up their engines, car horns honking impatiently, and people conversing in all their foreign languages and English are what make this beautiful city so vibrant.

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Written April 18, 2020 during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Patricia C. Bischof

Author of “Memoir of a 2g: Story of Secrecy and Resilience”