Friday, April 1, 2011

A Drive To Destiny

His body was aching enough to make him realize he was four score and ten. His back had always been his Achilles tendon so to speak although it was a bit higher up on his body But he hadn't experienced this type of problems for years. He had found a Chiropractor who was supposed to have magical hands and he was on his way to meet her for the first time. As he struggled to get into his car he thought that perhaps she wouldn't want to treat an old timer who was so advanced in age for fear that his bones might break. His bones were strong and except for his fragile disks there was nothing wrong with the skeletal part of his frame. He backed into the drivers seat since his knees couldn't take the strain of getting in the normal way. He pulled the seat belt around him as he started the car and the thought crept into his mind that many were suggesting he shouldn't drive any more. What the hell, he thought, my reflexes are as good as a person some fifty years my junior so what is every body afraid of? He Googled the directions and he was sort of surprised that they followed a road that he hadn't been on for many years but there were many spots on that particular road that held meaning for him. He pulled on to the Expressway cutting off anyone in his way. "What the hell!", he thought "The sign says merge doesn't it?" He took it for a few exits and got off at this road, one that contained many memories but one that he hadn't traveled for many years.

He noticed a hobby store to his right. He continued to go as he turned his head to look while he was driving. He remembered that when his wife was in the middle stages of Alzheimer's he took her in there. She had artistic talent and he thought if he brought her some pads and pencils and books she'd be able to draw. But she was too far gone even then for her to anything but scribble. A loud horn blast awakened him from his reverie and he had to swerve not to get into the left lane which was loaded with traffic. "Screw you. jerk! These guys don't know how to drive!" As he went a little further he noticed to his left an electro imaging place. "Oh, yeah", he thought, "this is the place she had to go for MRI's when she was first diagnosed. In the beginning she had no fear of the enclosure but later she had to have an open MRI or else she'd freak out. He wanted to help he so badly but really couldn't do anything as the disease progressed. An angry blast from an oncoming truck shook him back to the present and the driver shouted obscenities at him as he again swerved from oncoming traffic cutting off drivers on either side of him. Just a little further he saw the Pizza Hut they'd go to after the MRI's and he remembered the food that seemed to comfort them as they ate and grew fatter while they tried to forget the reasons they were there.

"Holy Mackerel!" he thought as he passed a road that cut a cross the thoroughfare he was on. He turned his head to look up the block and confirmed the fact that the hall one of his son's wedding reception was held. "How many years ago was that?", he thought. This was way before his wife was diagnosed with AD and everyone was much younger although at the time he thought he was getting older. He remembered dancing with his wife in their happiness that his son was entering a state which they enjoyed. The Merengue, Lindy and best of all a slow Fox Trot where he could hold her close and enjoy the warmth and softness of her body.

Once again he was awakened by blasts of horns from the crossing street. "Oh, shit! I just ran a light!". This time he couldn't blame anyone but himself.

He passed a road that brought him back some fifty-five years ago when he and a friend went to a wedding reception. They had no car and the buses stopped running at eleven-thirty. They enjoyed themselves so much that they missed the bus and they really didn't have the gumption to ask for a lift especially since they met some girls who they were trying to impress. So they walked through some very dark roads for about five miles until they got hitch when they approached the main drag. He remembered all the dogs that were barking and the darkness of the night and the fact that they had a little buzz on. His friend had recently died of cancer. He remembered they both had a full head of hair combed with a great pompadour. The years were not kind to either of them as it robbed them of what was once considered their crowning glory which now became their crowning pate. He remembered the girl he was supposed to call which he never did was said to be pregnant which in those days was a no-no and he was glad he never called her for who knows if he could've been blamed. Another loud blast from a horn and epitaphs shouted in his direction brought back to reality. "Boy are there cranks on the road today.". "Whatever happened to gentility?". He knew he was getting near to his destination where he was to make a right on the road which sounded so familiar to him but then , of course, how could he forget?

There was a great lounge he used to go to that was on this road which had a great singing waiter who sounded like Al Jolson and a bartender who played guitar. While he was trying to woo his wife he brought her there many times but one stood out clearly in his memory even though it occurred fifty-six years ago. He began to visualize this great time, "Al brought us our drinks and then told us (for my dates sake) that a gypsy had just left this very booth and sprinkled a magical love dust, potion, and whoever sat in this booth next would fall in love and get married.", Al used this line on many dates and the guys loved it and a lot of girls believed it but his wife laughed and spotted it as a come-on for whatever might be in his mind to follow. Then only trouble was he was really in love with her and she wasn't with him and he wanted her to be. Thet kept thinking of that many years after they were married they laughed about this youthful try at spinning a love story that is until she had no memory at all.

He was half awake when he turned on that very street and lost control of the car slamming into a massive tree. There were no more memories, only blackness!
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