Yet I missed it. I liked the stepping outside. I liked the smell of tobacco on my fingertips, on my towels even. I missed the weight of a full pack and the airy tension of an empty one. I missed my new chums, street-bound and unrepentant. Most of all, I missed the propulsion a cigarette lent me, the daylong momentum of one cigarette to the next. You sail by them, like polestars. I missed that. Still do.
Toward the end, in the academic quad at my school, I had a cigarette with an economics professor I had known for years as a heavy smoker. Back when I didn’t smoke, I walked straight by her, waved a little wave, and moved on. Since starting, I’d begun to stop and light up with her. The sort of chance meetings I’d missed out on in my previous forty-six years. She was never unhappy for the company, nor I for hers. These were the best kind of cigarettes — existent due to happenstance and ripe with discovery.
A long, but pleasant read.. especially for smokers.