Wednesday, January 22

Out of Time

I turn my car out of the hotel lot, turning and pausing on my way to the interstate.
Cars and trucks zoom past me, I squeeze in between them before speeding up and flying past.
I left before dawn, the hotel room an empty memory of a quick night spent along the freeway.
Mountains loom, then pass. Coffee is drank in slow gulps. I put on music, sing along, mute it, turn it up again.
Bridges. Desserts. Trees, so many trees. The sun follows me across the sky. I wolf an orange at a rest area, drink water while I consult the atlas before turning my car west again.
The sun greets my face as I drive past the green signs telling me how far away from home I really am.
Another hotel. Another plastic room key. Another dinner.
I tuck my feet underneath me. Pull out my computer. More music. Then a movie, until I lose interest.
I check my phone.
In a few days I will be out of time.
In a few days I will turn my car east again and brave the sun.
In a few days I will be back home, ready to go back to work.
I wonder. Will I send you pictures or a quick anecdote from the road?
It doesn’t really matter.
I might not know it, but I’m already out of time.
I’ve been out of time since the morning I crawled out of your bed and slipped to my car in the quiet morning air.
I see the thundering falls and stop to feel your arms around me, your chin in my hair, watching the water with me.
I look out the passenger window and pause to picture you sitting there.
I can see you in my car. Your pack in the trunk next to mine. Your travel mug in the holder next to mine.
I can feel you in my bed. You slip an arm around my waist and tuck me close to you, afraid to lose me in the night.
I’m already out of time. I realize it while I’m still facing west. I realize it while I’m standing at the waterfall. I realize it when I’m sitting on the bed checking my phone. I pull back into myself. It’s best not to get too carried away. After all, I’m out of time.