Incredible, over 800 hits in one day on Leavin' Las Vegas, must have hit a familar chord with some of you. Another thing happened yesterday I had one of them epiphany things. It just came out of the clear blue sky and hit me like a bolt of spring rain lightning.
There should be more of me, there just isn’t enough of me to go around.
If there were two of me, perhaps I might not miss the impotent
things in life, that I am supposed to notice. One of me could be happy and the other crabby as all get out, that has promise. Two of me certainly would help, I would not feel as if I am stretched thin and standing on the jagged edge of life on some days. Having more than one set of eyes, clearly a bonus, would help me to be more attentive to the things that are of concern, instead of the things that constantly seem to distract me away from what is important and requiring immediate attention.
Much like a great deal of the items we use in our daily routines, I often find “myself in short supply.” When I stop to purchase fuel for instance, there should be two of me to fuel this sucker, one of me, for both sides. Well, maybe four of me, two to fuel, one to pay the ticket and the other to fetch some ice for the cooler.
Our bus could use two drivers, or at least two people in the driver’s area.
One to drive the damn bus and the other to answer the constant barrage of questions. “Where are we? When will we get there? How far is it to Amarillo? Why is it every other truck is driven by a dumb ___ ? What is that smell? What is that noise? Have you seen my stuff?”
Another me to answer the little soft voice at 2A.M. that sneaks up to my right ear and says, “Grandpa, I gotta use the bathroom” and scares the be-jesus out of the singular me!
Here is another thought ... I could leave me at home and use the other me to make more trips.
Trips are good, they give you time to do the important things in life, such as: Re-calibrate the line behind fiction and reality. Often you take these trips with other people, with whom you do not associate with on a regular basis or with your family, with whom you do not get along well with at all. Trips teach you the value of budgeting, reading traffic patterns, logistic’s concerning the stowing and storing of traveling supplies and/or clothing.
Trips also expand the learning curve in many area’s of life.
They can greatly increase your mechanical abilities and knowledge, while at the same time, inflating your anxiety factor. They can show you new applications for duct tape, fence wire, clothes hangers and improve your mental outlook. Teach you how to meditate using a totally new mantra, increase your nuisance value (please remember "high ratings do not equate to high self-esteem") all this while limping home in the slow lane which will be closed in fifteen hundred feet for no ________ reason.
If there were two of me, the other guy could deal with the knot-head who points at my cowbell hanging from the back bumper and sez .... “Whut’s thet?” I however, being the only one around, have to answer him. I say it is a cowbell. He says, “What do you use it for?” and I explain to him, using agricultural terms the definition of wayward animals and locating them without the benefit of GPS (a cowbell). And he nods his head in silent agreement and then says ... “How do you ring it?” I suspect this is the very same person who hangs on my trailer as I approach a slow moving truck on the Interstate and impedes my ability to pass.
On a trip no one brings you the daily paper, turns on the news. You are not required to go to Al-Anon meetings, dress for success and bus meets are on a voluntary basis. You can for instance, stand in front of a mirror in your coach bathroom, while the little woman sleeps in the bed just a few feet away and practice saying over and over ... "no comment.”
You can even take it all one step further and stand in front of that very same mirror and practice saying "as far as I know everything's terrific"
(Hey? It works for me.)
Later on in the day, after numerous quick trip and fast food restocking snack food adventures, you can stretch out and put down some serious mileage. As the miles before you unravel like the string in a cheap suit, you can in your mind, write a country song entitled, "Hooker in the Closet."
Chorus: "There's a hooker in the closet, 'neath the monogrammed robes, don't know how she got there and I can't find my clothes. Officer Krupke, how are you tonight? I've misplaced my watch but I'm feeling alright."
(Toby Keith eat your heart out) Donate the royalties to a women's' shelter. Face it, we are not all going to get invited aboard Willie’s bus, so make the best of it, work with what you have. If you cannot figure it all out, ask the other me how it is that you do it.
There should be at least two more of me when I hit the campground. One of me to hook everything up, one of me to dump it all while it is still suspended and sloshing around (my favorite part of traveling by any stretch of the imagination), one of me to locate everything that seems to be wrong underneath, on top, and in the rear.
After this last trip it occured to me ... Perhaps it is time for me to just stop traveling altogether?
The wife and I have sat down and after an especially trying time of it, making our mark on the highway’s of America, and discussed this very thing. We have in all sincerity and honesty, weighed the possibility of quitting this traveling business period. Exploring the realm of totally new adventures for me in my twilight years, other than chasing small furry animals around our barn. Possibly channeling my energies to a new career of teaching creative writing at Cal State Bakersfield just south of Fresno.
I could for instance, write about Stuckey’s, Love’s lousy parking, the absolute disappearance of cheap food on the highway, why every genuine Navajo Head-dress I have seen here lately is Made In China.
Write about all those aliens I have met in truck-stops and Rest Area’s of this great country we live in. Those that are dead set in their thinking, who believe you are in fact, driving some illegal evil spawn of the now long defunct Trailways system and will not believe otherwise.
While you are traveling with your new other me, you can introduce yourself to strange and new folks. Those who bite the hand that feeds them, always hungry for more, and because they think because you are traveling in a bus that you have more than enough to eat, they just naturally figure they can sit down at the table of life and sup with you.
“Pass me some more zero’s for this estimate boy!”
And lastly, when I do find the other me, I am going to have him hire a publicist to put a positive spin on this bus business so that I might read about it ... And who knows?
Maybe even learn to enjoy it more.