It happens fairly frequently to me, every once in a while. There are some days when I'm just in a funk. I guess this was one of those days.
It was a sort of indifferent funk. I've been in it for about a week. I couldn't walk it off, nor could I sleep it off. Watching Holocaust movies didn't even work.
So I took the elevator to the top floor of the second-highest building around. And then I took the stairs to the roof. And then I climbed a 50-foot vertical ladder to an even taller portion of the roof with a book of 18th-century prose in my hand.
And then I felt.
As I climbed that tall ladder with a huge book in one hand and my other gripping tightly to the frozen cold metal rail of the ladder, I felt.
It was fear, but it wasn't indifference. Anything is better than indifference.
Maybe it was the knowledge that the only thing that kept me from dropping to a miserable, inevitable death was my one, shaking hand grasping onto one side of the ladder above my head and my two, shaking feet standing on the rung below.
But it was a rush, a rush of exhilaration stemming from the knowledge that my sole, short existence rested in the grip of one hand, literally. Knowing that I could drop abysmally though the gray, chilly air at any moment, and knowing that it was very possible.
Knowing that with each rung I climbed, I was a couple steps closer to death, closer to teetering on the edge, closer to not ever being able to finish the story I was reading.
And it felt good.