Saturday, March 5, 2016
Joe pulled the zipper on his bomber jacket up all the way and shrugged his shoulders to raise the collar up as high as it would go. The bitterly cold breeze had come out of nowhere on a clear, sunny fall morning, stealing away the warmth imparted by his morning cup of coffee. Stepping out of the shadow of the platform into the sun warmed him slightly but tears were starting to form as he headed into the wind and up the street. By the time he reached the brown door with the brass ring knocker, his nose and ear tips were rosy and his cheeks burned. Winter's surprise arrival was but one abrupt change he would encounter that morning.
Looking over the park from the conference room window, a second steaming cup of coffee in hand, Joe took stock of the news he had just received. It was almost seismic in scope, though he could not say it was entirely unexpected. A flock of birds rose as a body from a leafless tree, heavy with small, desiccating fruits. They wheeled around and then, at some seemingly prearranged point, split into two swarms of shimmering black clouds, one disappearing to the left, the other settling down again into another tree. It was an apt representation of what had just transpired on his side of the glass. The company was splitting up, some were leaving, others were going to be resettled, and it seemed to be completely whimsical in its genesis.