Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Jug Handles...Location: New Jersey

A fresh start.
We all need these.
In the last three weeks, I wrapped up my job in Beverly Hills. Packed up my life and spent ten days on the road traveling across the country.
We stopped in Aspen, snowboarded the Highlands Bowl with an elevation of 12,000+ feet.
He sprained his ankle on a mogul at the very end of the trip making me the main driver for the remainder of the 3,000 miles. We stopped in Boulder where I caught up with some of my favorite people in the world and I realized how much I miss my friends.
Several herbs and constipation conversations later, along with a sunburn, three different ice creams and two viewings of The Darjeeling Limited we packed up quietly before dawn and stepped out to our car in the middle of a faint snowfall.
We head to St. Louis...one of the flattest and dreariest drives I have ever seen.
The sky was gray with spits of rain here and there and all those fruited plains were painted brown with death. I guess we caught the midwest with its skirt up just before spring.
We hit St. Louis and about 15 minutes before we get to our destination, the gas light comes on, the rain breaks into a heavy downpour and I can't see the lines on the road anymore.
"You alright over there?"
"I can't really see."
"Pull over."
Normally I would fight this, but I know that even with his busted ankle he is the safer driver at this point.
We plan to stay only the night.
In the morning she takes us to breakfast.
"You guys should stay! I could show you around and he gets back Saturday morning. You could hang out. You guys should stay."
She seems lonely. A young bride in a castle of an apartment with every state of the art technological accoutrement one could think of. A perfectly poised chow. A grown up job with grown up friends. She has ambitions and plans and goals...and he is in Dallas tonight. Somewhere else a few days later.
We stay until Sunday and have a blast.
It is nice visiting these lives throughout the country. Like window shopping or an all night drive in movie theatre with back to back classics.
We drive from St. Louis to New Jersey and at 2:30am we park the car outside of "The Compound," and I freeze. This is home now. I have had my phone in my hand for the last two hours waiting to receive a text on whether or not my new godson has arrived.
In the morning I see that we both arrived to our new lives at roughly the same time. I decided to keep that to myself when talking to my family. I coo over his picture and make plans to come home and it starts to feel really difficult.
"I wish you were here," she says to me.
I brush it off and tell her, "I'll be home for the baptism soon," when all I really want to say is "me too."
I forget how hard it is to adjust. I get upset at night, scared, paralyzed. Insecurities run freer at night it seems.
But every morning I wake up and am so grateful for doing all of this. As difficult as it is, it is liberating to have a fresh start.

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