I so badly wanna take that midnight train goin’ anywhere. I think I’d go alone. Yes, alone.

For the ride, I’d bring a Walkman. Not an iPod – a Walkman. When I want to hear that certain song, I must work for it and be patient through the fast forward. Be happily forced to revel in my solitude and take that moment to appreciate the abyss of black trees blurring by as I wait to hear that chosen tune—my night’s anthem.

My backpack would be one of those army green—not camouflage—canvas rucksack types. Torn in all the obvious places. Yes. Let my fellow travelers know I’m a wanderer. A weekend hobo.

I’d bring one book. That book. The one I’ve been trying to read but it’s complicated, arduous, and because I’m me, always loses to the latest about-to-be-made-into-a-movie, chick-lit novel. You know the chick-lit type: you don’t have to think when you’re reading it. You don’t even have to create the characters in your mind because Sandy B and Ryan G have taken care of it for you.

I don’t care where the train takes me; in fact, I don’t want to know my journey’s end. It’s not about the destination. It’s about the ride, the people along the way—molding me, affecting me—forever changing my life through their very presence.

My drink for the ride? Coffee. Black. Strong. Enveloping. I love to wrap both hands tightly around a cup of coffee, even on the hottest of days. I want to feel and breathe in that cozy, steamy cup of life—like the cup itself is hugging me. In that one breath, I’m taken to a secluded spot in my imagination. I’m in the Adirondacks, just before sunrise and in the distance, pink sky.

At that moment, nothing matters – nothing, but the cricket chirps peppering my ear.

I’d bring a notebook – paper – no keyboards on this trip. I’d write down everything—what I heard, what I saw, what I thought—but just my sane thoughts. I’d have conversations with myself. We’d laugh. We’d bicker. We’d cry. We’d get to know each other. I’d write my first novel about it. I’d call it Conversations with Kate.

I’d meet people… happy, sad, crazy, scared. Loners, lovers, thieves, characters. I’d imagine us, friends. I’d share my sacred cup of coffee with them. I’d watch them – see if they close their eyes too and breathe it in. I’d look for that same emotion that passes through me each time I take that adulated sip.

I’d wonder if I made the right decision in sharing myself with them. I’d wonder if we’d ever see each other after this trip. I’d wonder if anyone would notice that I was gone. I’d wonder why I didn’t bring that chick-lit novel. If I took that midnight train goin’ anywhere, I wouldn’t do anything else… but wonder.