The elevated “L.” Our precious working-class Pink-line to the Loop. The Loop. Chicago’s downtown. Quintessential city-hurry with a midwestern flare.
To the Red Line. Underground. [Subverting the city until it’s far from the Loop again].
3 blocks to the Quigley Center, where I work.
Every day, I walk about 10 minutes, then take two different trains into the city to work. It takes about an hour on average. It may sound monotonous and boring at first, but I promise it is anything but that!
I LOVE my commute.
I know that part of my love for my commute is because I love the “L”– Chicago’s train system. The first time on it with my community I could hardly contain my excitement. See below for evidence:
It’s a wonderful time to reflect, pray, read, and people- watch. I’ve always loved airports and traveling for these reasons. And now it’s like a get to ride in an airplane everyday! Minus the unpleasant security experience.
And the “L” crowd is so diverse! When I get on the train, I’d say it’s majority working-class Latinos and African-Americans, and as we approach the Loop, we add some hipsters, some yuppies of all ethnicities, some gray-haired businessmen, and some probably homeless people. I love how equalizing it is. We all need to get somewhere. And we’re all using the same method of transportation. And as I look around, I’m reminded of how small I sometimes let our God be. I’m reminded to let God out of the box I try to contain “Him” in.
Each and every person on that train, each and every person I see on each and every commute, is made in God’s image and likeness. God created each of us. WOW! God loves each of us as his Beloved. The self-centered yuppie trying to make her way in the business world. The Latina mama suffering from domestic abuse who quietly takes her kids to school on the L. The homeless man drinking beer so early in the day. Me. Lowly me. Probably looking uppity in my business-ish clothes, awkwardly making my way from La Villita. This implodes any close-minded view of God we sometimes hang on to when we don’t let our eyes truly see the people we pass everyday. When we close our hearts and make God in our own image instead of the other way around.
Today, and everday, I pray on my commute: Lord, Give me your eyes, that I may learn to love like You. Will you join me?