Chapter 1 (“Fallng Down Drunk”?) middle section

31 Dec

I was so tired.  Where was my purse?  I looked, and the black cargo bag did not seem to be with me.  I could not remember where I had put it down.  I was not thinking clearly.  My mind would be rational for a moment, then I would forget just as suddenly what I had managed to remember.  I was walking peripatetic in the direction of the Cabin-Mansion.  I wished I could call Kim for a ride. . .  But I realized anew that my cell phone was in my purse–not with me.  My head was so foggy that I looked around, trying to figure out where I was so she could pick me up.

Seeing the sign to the other veterinary hospital in town, I realized I was on Dayton Valley Road, next to the bridge, just passing Riverside Vet Hospital and the Dayton Valley Nursery.  Since I didn’t have my phone I knew I just had to keep walking.  I knew if I followed that road I would eventually get back to the cabin-mansion.  I had driven down this stretch of pavement a million times growing up, on my way to school, or a club event, or a sports game, but I had never walked the entire way and did not know how long it would take.  Maybe Kim would drive by, on her way home, and stop to pick me up. . .

I looked down at my pants.  Surprisingly, brown streaks of dirt ran down the legs.  The cuffs were ripped at the bottom and filthy.  Ugh–these were my favorite jeans, and I would not be able to wear them now.  The fabric over my right knee was so thin it was about to rip.  Was that a blood stain on the leg?  My thoughts were fragmented.  I could not remember anything that might have caused an injury.  No, it must have been more dirt.  Nothing hurt.  I would remember if I had fallen.  I just wanted to get home.  I was really tired.  I started running, trying to get there faster.  A car drove by—did I look like a silly nomad, trudging in my stained pants?  I probably knew them, and the story of me running down the sidewalk in dirty jeans would be spread around the tiny town by morning. . .  I slowed to a wayfaring walk.  I needed to maintain pseudo-sobriety and look cool.  Concentrate on walking, don’t look drunk.  I have to get home soon, so I can sleep. . .

A white, wood fence was on my left.  I heard my footsteps on the concrete of the sidewalk, and wondered how long I had been wondering home.  I had passed the four way stop that led to the three schools in town, so that was good.  I was still at the first of three planned housing-projects though.  I had a ways to go still–how far was it, anyway?  Music surprised me.  I heard voices!  What were they doing outside this late at night?  I didn’t know what time it was since I didn’t seem to have my phone with me, but it seemed very late.  They must be up to no good.  I passed the backyard the noise was coming from hastily.  Would they try to hassle me?  I hoped they would not try to beat me up or rape me.  I did not think I could adequately defend myself since I was so trashed.  My motor-skills were not at their peak.  I sped up, trying to get away from the possibility of running in to hostile people. . .

I just wanted to go to bed.  I would have to call the bar tomorrow and ask if I had left my purse there.  I hoped Mr. Blaver, the owner, and my Intermediate School PE teacher, would not tell my former best friend Crystal (his daughter-in-law) that I had been so drunk.  I started quietly crying to myself, thinking of how I had tried to sing karaoke.   I wanted to sing as well as Kim, and show her that I could do Green Day’s “Basket Case” really well.  I was already too drunk by the time my turn came though.  After drinking with Mary at the cabin-mansion, Kim and I had gone to the Daytona to gamble.  I have no idea how much we consumed there, but I was trashed by the time Kim drove us to Blaver’s bar, where I ordered a rum & coke and signed up for karaoke.  I could not even hear the lyrics, let alone read the words on the screen.  All I remember was trying to cover up my lack of singing by dancing.  Mr. Blaver was standing next to me asking for the mic back.  I guess the song had ended.  I was mortified that a former teacher with connections to Crystal had seen me in that state.  As I walked down the dark sidewalk in the middle of the summer night, I wailed my regret.  I suddenly remembered how I ended up outside.  I wanted to leave the bar.  I did not want anyone I knew to see me.  I wished I had not embarrassed myself by attempting karaoke.  I went to sit out on the sidewalk in front of the bar and waited for Kim so we could leave.  One of the first times I ever drank alcohol, Kim told me if I ever had too much, got into trouble, or stared getting in a bad situation–just go home.  Always go home.  I could not remember if I told Kim I was going outside—I just wanted to get out of there.  I also did not remember leaving the parking lot.  My itinerant trek was just an escape from mortification.  I certainly did not desert Kim intentionally, or remember leaving at all, actually.  Hopefully she would drive past me soon and take me the rest of the way home. . .

I tripped as the sidewalk ended suddenly.  The road narrowed down to two lanes at this point and there were no more street lamps.  The darkness made me a little more worried.  Quail Ridge, the final neighborhood before the cabin-mansion, was on my right.  I must be over halfway home!  Unfortunately, this was the darkest part of the journey.  The ranch was on my left, just a stretch of dirt and sage brush, and some sprawling fields and houses were scattered to my right.  I was wearing my purple “great catch” tank—nothing reflective.  I hoped no one would hit me as they sped down the rickety road.  I was sweating and tired.  I needed to pass out badly, and hoped Kim would drive by and take me to the cabin-mansion.  I knew she would not be too upset that I was a defector from the bar.  I wondered how long had I been walking.  It felt like forever, and I just wanted to go someplace familiar and sleep. . .

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