A stramble up Hillside way turned into a bit of a mess yesterday. I wanted to bake in the 90-degree sun but not quite like this. Felt I had no control over anything. All the while I was assaying this area as if I might move there. I am a free person, free to move any place I can afford. But that’s the problem. In fact there are a lot of problems that prevent me from changing domicile. Laziness and inertia are key players. But money is key.

The part of Hillside I encountered yesterday was mostly on and around Hillside Avenue. The F express train is a key artery, as would be the E express should you settle toward the Van Wyck. The area is prickly, gravelly, starchy. Some of the kindling is broken up by the presence of the Supreme Court building and other court-related structures on Sutphin Boulevard. I found remains of an old clamshell payphone across from the Supreme Court, and yellow mats and other evidence of a once plentiful payphone population around that building.

I passed Hillside Honda, a dealership briefly made famous for its effective commercials starring a young woman of multi-ethnic pedigree. Michelle Rabbani? Can’t find much on her now but she was quite the rising starlet at one point.

I honestly don’t remember what I was doing there, or if I had a plan. I did want to see what the vibe was like, in the remote chance that I might actually move to the area. I did not see a lot of apartment buildings. Mostly private houses and maybe one apartment building that looked like it might be rent stabilized. But I did not cover a very broad segment of Hillside. And I ended up getting a little lost, walking to Queens Boulevard thinking I was headed back to the E train. I stayed hydrated, purchasing those planet-hostile bottles of water. y about 3 pm the heat was such that I wished I brought my hat. In the heat I wear it backwards, so the vizor portion covers my neck, preventing it from burning too bad. I did not have the hat but I also don’t think the sun was that punishing. It was 91 degrees and I sweated buckets. It felt good, to purge the toxins as my body weeps. But of course after purging all those toxins my goal at the end of the day was a bar, where I promptly restored those vanquished toxins.

I remember a brief argument with a fellow barfly about how there were toxins in alcoholic beverages. At first he disagreed but quickly changed course. Of course there are, he conceded, it’s right there in the word: Intoxicated.

Earlier in the day I had been in Flushing, on 46th Avenue approaching Smart Street, when a familiar face appeared. We both stopped and tried to get our bearings as to who each other was. It turns out he is a regular dude behind the counter at a bodega in Astoria. I don’t know if he lives in Flushing and commutes to Astoria or if he just happened to be there but it was interesting and novel to encounter someone you’re familiar with in one context far away from that place. We got a laugh out of it, shook hands, and moved on.

I would later subject myself to possibly the worst sandwich ever. $9 for a pack of gruel between sheets of bread. Funny thing is I’d earlier passed a long line of people waiting to get free food from a charity. I should have just done that, the food they got had to be better than the putridity I spent money on.

In Flushing I encountered one of those obnoxious problems that plague city life. A maintenance hole cover that rattled and croaked every time a car drove over it. Living next to something like that could drive a sane person to madness. The noise was quite loud and irregular in occurance. It must make people on 46th Avenue homicidal.

Big mistake yesterday was wearing the wrong shoes. I had no idea until near the end of my stramble that I put on the Tevas from last year, the ones riddled with holes and nearly falling apart. When I discovered these shoes were almost in pieces I still believed them to be the shoes I got recently, within the last couple of months. I had in mind to write a sternly worded letter to Tevas saying that I thought these were walking shoes. Why do they look like this after just 2 months?

Alas, I was wrong. I wore the old shoes unaware, reminding me that I should discard them to prevent future upfuckeries such as this. That cannot have helped matters in terms of getting from all those points A to points B and C and D.

All told yesterday was hot. I got a lot of sun, on which my body gorged. I wore a sleeveless shirt that had exposed flesh falling off from last week’s sunburn. Now the skin is more solid. That’s typical for me.