New York City, December 12, 2013

★★★ Scarves were ubiquitous in the hard, bright morning — scarves with matching hats, scarves in loose elaborate double loops, a scarf wrapped outside the coat to cinch the whole outfit shut at the neck. Earmuffs followed giant headphones. The bodega was being rearranged, the flowers safely inside but still looking cold-weary. Getting a cab in the chill after eight at night was a competition; by the 11 o’clock hour, there was nothing even to compete for. Every cab was dark and snugly occupied, or lit to show the figures already climbing in. The crosstown walk to the subway was bracketed by glowing skies: moonlight coming down through thin clouds off to the left; the lights of Midtown rising to meet the clouds to the right.