Church Square Shopping Center at Caroline & Eager Streets

Picture at an intersection of two streetlights, a fence around a building labeled Church Square Shopping Center, and fancy Johns Hopkins Hospital buildings are rising behind it all. The sky is blue with some wispy clouds.

Thursday’s bike rides went all different directions–first to Hampden for a therapy appointment and then up to the Rotunda for some routine blood work, back home for lunch, and then down to Fells Point for some shopping and back up the hill to Mount Vernon for a drink with N. before almost beating the rain on my ride back home. When you do your errands by bike you get to ride a bike all over pretty much all day long, and oh my, I needed that.

I snapped this picture at the corner of Caroline and Eager Streets as I waited for the light to turn green. I’ve been looking down at my navel for a minute, because that’s what depression can do to me, but I’m looking up again, thanks to time passing and the many supports I have in my life. Up and out, and on this bike ride I could see these layers of the city. There’s the overgrown weeds in the sidewalk, the chain link fence with barbed wire reminding us to stay out, as if we wanted in.

There’s the empty bus stop bench, the bird, the unfriendliest invitation to wait. Church Square Shopping Center, enter from the other side, I guess. Beyond that are the glass atria of Johns Hopkins Hospital, sneak a peek at the middle and there’s the Castle part of the hospital campus. It’s just right over there, but it’s a different world, and it looks like it does because this corner looks like it does. Hopkins saved my life (for now) and it destroys so many lives. It is complicated, until it isn’t.

The light turned green, I got back on my bike, pedal pedal pedal, past so much construction, the end of of so many homes, the beginning of so many others. I hadn’t been to Fells Point in a couple of months, and now there’s a Starbucks, and that empty lot is going to be luxury apartments. Three blocks north is an entirely different city. Block by block, so much to see, gotta pay attention. I’m glad I’m looking up and out again.

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