Six of us, some with things packed, some packed as things, driving.
Conversation touching degrees of separation, Jen's background, past trips
and the like. The cats join in, with their plaintive mewls at the swaying
of the SUV. Light traffic, good time.
Nearly there, a gagging sound. Splash. Viscous lapping noises from the
rear now accompanying each small-town twist of the road. Splash, splash.
Stopping to see if Emma is alright. As much as any animal standing in a
pool of its own vomit can be, she is. We drive the last ten minutes to our
destination, set free the two prisoners, one of whom carries with her the
stench, but both of whom seem fine at last.
Night fall. Turkey burgers. Sleep.
In the hallway, slow drips from the ceiling. It is a gray day. Sheets
fall from the morning sky but, on the highway, from twelve foot puddles,
rise up again onto the windshield, to be shoved down by two madly flailing
wipers. Jen and I in borrowed raincoats.
Home Depot, identical to the others, only the faces have been changed.
CAT5 comes in pink, makes a festive belt, and is inexpensive when bought to
fit a waist instead of a corridor. The drapes are cut, we leave the store
behind. Traffic makes up for lost time, drags us to near a standstill. We
hit an old, independent book store. Shelves stuffed with fifty, eighty,
hundred year old books. _Gray's Anatomy_, complete with notes from a
previous owner. Piles of Daniel Steele near the back. I buy _Heart of
Darkness_ for a dollar. Unsated, on to a nationwide chain, with floors and
floors of the shiniest new publications. Near the registers, two rivers
spill from the ceiling. Coconut ice cream on the way home.
Once home, back out again to the grocery. Hectic pace as two cooks seek
out the items of two confusingly overlapping lists. I push the cart.
Home again. Later, on the dock, swaying in the wash of large boats, a
thick fog settling over the yard, maybe over the town, county, state.
Soft, permeable, yet simultaneously impenetrable. The dock and house are
cut off, separated from the world. Crabs climb onto the dock and splash
back into the water.
Curry and rice. A movie. Sleep.
The sun is out. The sky is bluer than the water, cloudless. Kayaks out
into the ocean, through the headwind, to an island. We walk around,
barefoot in the sand. Gulls feast on overturned crabs, armored legs
flailing in protest. We dig holes in the wet sand and quickly fill them in
to cover the animals we find. We paddle back.
Leftover curry. Reading in the sun. Salad, falafel, lemon turkey.
Scrabble, I lose badly. Sleep.
Sunday is even windier than Saturday. Whitecaps out in the channel. A
banana for breakfast, then in to catch a bus, cash or traveler's checks,
please, back to Boston. I forget _Heart of Darkness_ in the pocket of my
raincoat, read Gibson instead.