Respite – fin

Shes not tired, atleast not as tired as she should be. She finished the lime redbull ages ago. By now darkness had fallen and an odd mist was all around. She drove at a little less than a comfortable pace, but it was okay, the cars in front of her kept her honest. One cat on her lap, the other in the passenger seat. Some time ago her GPS had failed. It wasn’t that she didn’t know the way, having driven it a dozen times since last spring, but that the 280 mile journey felt a little less lonely. And though she knew the heavy clouds and fog probably had something to do with it, she half suspected her GPS was simply giving her the silent treatment from having been argued with so much on the trip up. Silent, save for every hour or so loudly chiming in with, “GPS signal lost!!” Rudely interrupting the soothing sound of Aaron Manhke’s voice, and causing her heart to jump more than it should. Aaron’s subject matter, half hour long podcast episodes of Murder and Monsters. It is her cup of tea, and driving thru the dark and the mist, provides for the perfect atmosphere.

Once darkness falls, the drive becomes dangerously monotonous. She suddenly finds herself traveling thru a wormhole. She might be flying thru a Stargate. And when the rain starts falling, and the cars in front of her begin spraying water at her, she might have been traveling thru hyperspace. Destination: Home.

And in those long, dark hours, one cat cutting off the circulation to her foot, soothing, but spooky tone of Aaron’s voice in the background, rain drops hitting the windshield, almost creating its own sound of radio static, she feels herself changing. Mentally morphing herself back to reality. When she reached the end of the wormhole, she would be back home. Back to life. Back to her every day. 

One cat suddenly sits up and begins yowling and pacing back and forth, as though awoken from a nap and not quite sure where he is. “I know buddy,” she says, rubbing his head til he settles back down, this time on her other leg, “you and me both…” He lets out a sigh. Aaron continues his story. GPS chimes in that her signal has been lost. “You never even tried,” she says, begrudgingly. But then shrugs, soon they would be home..

Respite – Day 0.5

You know you need a Snickers… when you start arguing with the GPS…

The drive is long, longer than its been before. What starts out as a lovely drive past the fields of sheep as the sun goes down, soon turns into a shouting match with the GPS woman. “Quit telling me what to do, I get it!” The night’s darkness closes me in like tunnel vision and I just drive, in hopes I reach my destination. Both cats, once adorably cuddled on my lap, now add to the growing discomfort. One tiny, bony elbow jabbing into my forearm, and the circulation slowly being cut off from my driving foot. Hashtag: Thank God for Cruise. 

I reflect on the eerie quietness of the back seat, hoping to goodness the tortoises are still alive. A flash of a memory crosses my mind. Looking into the tank of my college days pets, to find one hermit crab embracing the other. And as I drew closer, to my horror, finding it was actually eating the other, wrapped around it, one claw shoveling brain matter into its greedy maw, like movie goers shoveling popcorn into their mouths… I dare not turn around, and trust my tortoises aren’t that hungry… Oh God, must drive faster…

I occupy my brain with the qued up episodes of the podcast Lore. Lulled by the conversational, slightly monotonous tone of the host. Each short episode exciting me more. Where does one find a guy like this? Hes definitely my kind of geek. His subject matter ranging from ghost stories, to serial killers, to witches, to Irish folktales, told from the perspective of a storyteller. I love it. I get it. I’m hooked…

Until my GPS rudely interrupts his lovely, lulling words, to tell me to keep going on this route…

I feel like I’m stuck in a wormhole. Balancing between pain and pleasure. My eyes want to dip, maybe from monotony, maybe from fatigue, maybe from the steady onslaught of oncoming headlights… but my body is still alive. And there’s miles to go before I sleep…

The drive was long, longer than its been before. But in the end, I made it.