Monday, August 22, 2011

When an Adventure Earns its Name

Weather. Nebraska has some stormy nights. They aren’t dark though. The lightning is so bright, and so often, one could do the smallest of needle work at 3 am. The storms are anything but quiet. Rain drops turn into gigantic balls of hail. In California, a sound on a roof could be a squirrel or raccoon romping across; but, in Nebraska it is like a million squirrel and raccoon feet are pounding the rooftops in a meth induced frenzy.

These storms would wipe out California because the lightning strikes would set the whole state on fire in two seconds, which is my frame of reference having always lived there. At 3 am, my brain goes into fear mode until I am wide awake, wide-eyed, wondering how soon before we all go up in smoke. Then I laugh at myself. In Nebraska it isn’t the smoke and flames that will destroy, it’s the flying glass and hail that will rip you apart. So watching the storm by standing at the window is one very stupid thing to do. It’s better to find a corner clutching a change of clothes in case I would need to evacuate. I’m so much a California girl. Give me an earthquake any day.

And then after an hour or so, the storm is gone. The air is quiet, the skies are clear, the driveways are dried up. One would think it was all a very bad nightmare if it wasn’t for the tell-tale tree branches, and loosened stones scattered on the ground.

It’s trippy. I kind of would like to return to Cali about now; but, not yet. The adventure has only just officially started.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Road Trip

I had room in my car for my son. I figured he would ask where he could put his suitcase. He agreed to ride with me from California to Nebraska; so the least I could do was find a place for his tiny amount of stuff.  I couldn’t see well enough out the back window with everything in my car. I bit my nails knowing I had to make one more drop off at the storage unit before leaving town.

The trip was uneventful in the dramatic sense. We didn’t have any car trouble, no one thought to break into my car, we ate well, the weather was clear. The event for me was being with my son and having a good time. He never complained. His only request was that when we arrived in Laramie, Wyoming, we go to Pizza Hut.

We were going to stop there for the night, but eating our pizza, we decided to keep driving.  The town was desolate and depressed. The only color among the monochrome of tan dirt was an anachronism: a cowboy riding his horse on the sidewalks.  He wasn’t going to find any saloons though, only a Pizza Hut with kind waitresses, and a family or two enjoying their meal.

Saturday, August 6, 2011


I accumulated too much stuff in the 10 years I lived in one place. So my wonderful life-long friend drove up from her town to help me sort, pack, and move. What an ordeal. But, we dug in and filled many trash bags, boxes for donation, and boxes for storage. By the time I was ready to turn in my apartment keys, and be on the road, I had only a car load of stuff. Still, it seemed like too much.

Now, I will have 2 years to live without many of my things. So far, it’s going okay. I hated that I had to buy hangers because I forgot to pack any, and I had many. But oh well. In any case, I know one thing, I will never accumulate stuff as I did these past 10 years. It really is cathartic.