Monday, March 10, 2008

At mile 33.

I pull abruptly to the edge of the highway, get out of the car, and slam the door before I realize that I have no idea why I stopped or why I shut the door so hard. It occurs to me just now that I have been asleep during the long drive and have only just awoken. I turn from the highway and begin climbing the rocky hill there, weaving among tiny evergreen saplings. I can smell the ocean, that is for sure; the smell of death and freedom is unmistakable.

I turn and look back at my little Volvo. It sits there, small, abandoned, and lonely, as trucks scream by. I can see the dent in the rear fender from here, and I am surprised; that day, with its miserly heat, maddening traffic, and flaring tempers, seems so far away that it seems impossible it ever existed. Maybe it didn’t. Like trees in forests, maybe melancholy in suburban cul-de-sacs doesn’t happen if nobody pays it any attention.

I reach the top of the hill, and, with my arms stretched insanely above my head, I wave at the huge expanse of blue stretched out before me like an endless embrace.

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