Saturday, October 14, 2006

New Mexico

Bone tired here in Albuquerque. It rained in Santa Rosa where we had planned on spending the night camping at a state park and the gas was jacked up expensive so we said to hell with this place and drove on in to Albuquerque. It was a magical ride for quite a ways through New Mexico with the dark greens of the brushy balls of sage and whatnot among the sea of yellowgrass earth rolling over the horizon, always is magic for me as I have hitched through here broke several times over the years going west or east. New Mexico was always good to me and I usually got good rides. But Texas is another story and I can remember having a hard time getting through that state. But one time I had been standing for over ten hours on a stretch of panhandle highway when the temperature was above 100 degrees, dresssed in shiny metallic disco pants and a dirty t-shirt with a plastic trash bag filled with my belongings, mostly dirty ripped up clothing from my work as a tree trimmer in San Diego. I was leaving a bad situation and a lousy, dangerous job that I was being paid $50.00 a day for. What compelled me to leave, besides the lousy job was a mounting creepiness in the household where I was renting a room that culminated in a roommate getting stabbed by a butterfly knife that had been meant for me. He made the mistake of running away as the guy cornered me by the front door I was unable to get opened in time. I watched the knife waving before my chest and remembered reading somewhere that you can often control a maniac with a commanding voice. I said as low and as steady and as commanding as I could, "Don't stab me Ricardo." It all happened too fast for me to be afraid. After I said it my other roommate made a dash out the back and in a split second Ricardo abandoned me as prey and chose him...I know most people cannot understand how this would happen, what would incite this seemingly harmless, if odd, person to turn into a knife wielding lunatic but it happens. I did nothing to incite it, albeit the roommate who got stabbed had turned him down in his request for one of our beers...The disco pants I had found in a drawer of my room when I moved in and somewhere down the road my last pair of jeans actually fell apart on me (climbing palms) and I had to don them. I was quite a spectacle and the truckers that blew past me blew their air horns, laughing as the rush of air blew my hair back. I was past tears and at the breaking point towards evening when a small grey Camry flew by me. A minute later I heard a beep and I grabbed my trash bag and hoofed it up to the car. I looked in deciding that even if it was Charles Manson himself I would take the ride. Inside was a beautiful young woman behind the wheel. I opened the door tentatively, embarassed and in a state of disbelief. Umm, I said, I really appreciate this but...I probably don't smell all that great. I haven't had a shower in a few days..."

She laughed, "I don't care, get in."

I hopped in. We drove off. She was from Georgia she said as we drove east. I told her about myself. For some reason I was really at ease with her and I could tell she got a kick out of me and my disco pants. A ways up the road she asked if I could roll and I told her I was perhaps one of the best joint rollers within a hundred miles or so.

"There's some papers in the ashtray there and down at your feet is some weed."

Between my feet was a large shoulder bag. I opened it. Inside was a pound of green bud. I pulled out a nice one and began to manicure it on a magazine when I saw the cruiser behind us. My heart stopped in my throat. The cruiser's lights came on. We were both frozen silent. The cruiser passed us and pulled the car ahead of us over.

Later we got a motel in Oklahoma and I took a hot shower. She bought me a six of tall boys and I was in heavan under the hot water with a cold beer on the soap tray. I wondered if things would progress even further and when I came out of the shower with a towel around me she was under the covers looking at me with a smile. I climbed under them and moved next to her warm voluptuous body. It was as if we had known each other forever. Truly the best ride I ever got in my life.

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