My hand freezes, unable to knock. A moment of lucidity. I breathe. I study the hand, hoping it will bring me something. My hand is becoming my mother’s and my mother’s hands are becoming my grandmother’s. Does this imply some wisdom? Maybe my hand will rescue me, if I let it. If only it could speak, but it keeps its counsel, right next to my tight-lipped wrist.
From the bus stop to the hotel room is 400 yards. I could turn back. The pavement is busy, I could bury my desires in the frantic trajectories of the crowd. I could walk by, sail to another kind of adventure. But my treacherous feet have brought me to this door.
If I want, I can blind-side him, reel him in. He’s so close, on the other side of this door. My uncontrollable feet and unbiddable hand know what my heart won’t allow. I want to learn about his dead mother’s homemade Yorkshire puddings. Amaze him with my knowledge of the relationship between wasabi and horseradish. He’s only a firefly flared into my path. If I walk till dawn I know he’ll be gone. All I have to do is start the journey away from here and never look back.
My fist is trembling, straining between fear and abandon.