The words from the story The Name of the Wind were guiding me home in the last two hours. A story of magic and fantasy to linger inside of as the miles added up.
His voice came out of the silence underneath the sound of the storyteller, "Are we in Rhode Island?"
"I don't know." I didn't want to know.
"We are! Baby, we are in Rhode Island."
He sounded so happy I didn't want to show him the tears that were warming my face, they came so fast I didn't understand them, wasn't ready to share them. The darkness mixed with the distraction from the story became my focus.
Just drive. Even though you want to turn around. Drive home.
We are on the plane, 7:00am on Thursday morning. The plan to get to CA by noon, have a quick lunch with Dave's brother who we are buying the van from, then get on the road so we can feel the sunshine and drive as far as we can that first day on the road.
We start for the runway and are called back. Fuel is leaking, quite rapidly from the plane. They run tests, try to fix it.
At 8:30am I am at the bar with the other displaced passengers who are drinking Bloody Mary's and beers. This was a no alcohol trip as we would be driving every day for up to 600 miles at a time. When Dave assured me we would not be getting to CA that day, I thought about the time one of my best friend's and I ended up at the airport early together, going separate places and got to spend time at the bar.
I ordered a drink I know she loves. I don't think I've ever had a Manhattan. I called her about a possible ride home because we may not be leaving that day. One of her husband's friends who I met at their wedding is the bartender. This is how Rhode Island is, it rarely surprises me anymore.
I didn't want to go home. It felt like going backwards. Going home, getting to Boston the next day. I told Dave I would go anywhere else. He got us to Atlanta that night, with a flight to LA the following morning.
Adventure doesn't need a timeline, so long as it keeps moving forward; these moments of change of letting go of a plan of not knowing what to expect, they mine a place inside of us that isn't defined by words, only a feeling that is the foundation of an iteration of spirit we didn't see coming.
And so we would go to Atlanta. We would sit in an airport for 10 hours (many of them trying to find a new flight plan) that was only 1 hour from home.
When the plane was stopped because of the leaking fuel I knew that we would be safe on our drive. It felt like a blessing from the Universe, a sign. My nerves relaxed.
We got to our hotel room in Atlanta at 9:30pm, ate the turkey, cheese and coleslaw sandwiches I had made for the car ride that day and watched tv from bed. Little bags of potato chips crunched as we let our skin relax onto the bed acting as our table with little crumbs scattered on the white comforter.
Typically we fall to sleep each night after we come together in a sex that has become as ritualized as brushing our teeth. The way we connect after the day has pushed and pulled us. An ease into sleep, a repair of nervous systems, touch and intimacy our glue.
Hotel sex is unique in its unfamiliarity and offers a chance to let any stress of home be washed away as you lay underneath crisp sheets and pillows your head tries to understand. You leave it behind as though it was a moment of fantasy.
We were exhausted from nothing and just being there felt special. We had begun our journey.
Atlanta. To California.
I fell asleep hoping I could find hot water in the morning for the powdered coffee I had packed. My morning coffee is how I root in. I think about it as I clean the kitchen after dinner.
Sensitive souls need to know where they will ground, especially inside of adventure. All the unknowns can be anchored in the safety of a cup of coffee, the scent of an oil, a hand wrapped in your own.
The alarm was set for early, I can't remember now the exact number.
Tomorrow we would be in California where the sun would guide the start of our drive. I didn't know in that bed in Atlanta that the story about almost nothing, so much nothing, was about to be written.