Road TripPosted: December 31, 2008
I was at a dinner with, amongst other people, a man that was quite a bit older than I was. After the food had been eaten, and the wine poured out, and the restaurant’s noise winding down to more of a chatter due to the progressing night, he began a story that was spurned on by an unknown trigger. We all spoke in a language that the restaurant didn’t understand, so that nothing was quite lost in translation. He began,
“I once drove, nonstop, across the country, for 9 days, and 8 nights.” The sentence had piqued our interests.
“It’s true, I didn’t even start to sleep until halfway through it. Even when I did sleep, I slept in the car while someone else drove,” he continued, “86′ Toyota Corolla we drove, damn if that car didn’t last us another few years.”
At this point, most of us were somewhat engrossed in his story. The lone person that wasn’t was blocked by a language barrier.
He started again, “It was actually with this one right here,” he nudged at the woman next to him, which just so happened to be his wife. She added,
“I do recall that you were complaining about some pain in the posterior area,”
“That’s right! I was sitting there, driving, for so long that my ass was literally wounded,” he quipped in response. It generated chuckles among our dinner party. He began to discuss the logistics of the trip, that it would have taken a grand total of just about 4 days and 4 nights, if they hadn’t taken the ‘scenic’ route, or stopped for any sort of amenities.
“No, I remember that we would take baths whenever we were passing lakes that seemed clean, just stop for a few minutes, clean ourselves up, and head back on the road,” he added, “If we needed to wash our clothes or anything, we’d do it there, and wedge them between the windows and the frame of the car, so that they would dangle outwards. Let the sun and passing wind dry the clothes for us as we drove.”
“It was just us, some food, and the road,” the wife appended.
The bill was placed on the table with a slight clack, and the table was cleared somewhat loudly. The chatter of the restaurant had gone to more of a murmur, and a check of the cell phone would tell me that it was already a few minutes past midnight, and that someone had offered an adventure via a text message. I thought it to be fitting.
“And the 86′ Corolla,” someone interjected. Quiet laughter filled the air for a second or two.