When the workdays turn into work-nights, and when the pressures of responsibility threaten the peace of my heart, I look out the window of my 25th floor office at a building across the street. This building, Strata 100, is probably the oldest along Emerald. It is also the place where my parents first met. A little more than two decades ago, my mother, who worked for a bank down the street, walked over to handle the account of my father’s company. My father saw her for the first time, and after she had left, he announced that she was the woman he was going to marry. And he did. The rest, as they say, is history.
Across me is a father and his daughter. They’re in a table for 2, and they’re both leaning forward with their elbows on the table looking like lovers before they realize there are a million sacrifices that come with staring into each others eyes. He, the father, is wearing his daughter’s backpack – her small purple backpack.
“This is my favorite color,” she says as she points to a pink balloon she just colored.
“I know.” He says, “I know.”
They say that underneath us is a civilization not like ours, but also very similar. Little cities in the dark with little people living in them populate the underground. I’ve never seen them myself, and I can’t name anyone who has. But they’re there, even if it’s just our minds that say so.