I’m sitting in the Portland airport right now. I have 59% battery on the laptop and approximately two hours to kill. I don’t know why I booked my flight so late, I think maybe I was using it as a “test case” to see if I could do an entirely public-transit based day-trip into the local sawmill.
Leave California around 6:30am, arrive in Portland around 8:45am. Hop the train from the airport towards work, arrive via shuttle van just shy of 10am. Work till around 4:30pm, take the shuttle van to the train, train to the airport, and clear security just before 6pm. Thing is, my flight’s not until 8:45pm. I think I did this just in case, assuming I could get on standby for the earlier flight if I broke speed records (I did, and I couldn’t, economically).
So then, here I am. Nursing the first of at least a few tall black-and-tans, pondering what to eat even though my bowels protest (I think they’re grumpy from not having a decent at-home evacuation today… 4am was just too early for them, and they do tend to get upset when they get off-schedule).
But, even though I’m weary from the rigors of travel, I count two good things which came of today: 1) I got do some much-missed reading-for-pleasure, and 2) I totally fell in love in the security line. Let’s take them in reverse order.
Cut to security line at the airport. The girl in front of me is small, slimish with crinkled-curly dirty-blonde hair. From behind, she looks plausible, but I’ll need frontal confirmation to say for sure. Suddenly, as we progressed through the ranks of the line, awaiting our turns to undress and empty our pockets as a thick, symbolic American middle-finger to Al Qaeda, my opportunity arose.
Roses and Cigarettes, as I have since fondly dubbed her, dropped her black belt on the ground – and failed to notice. As she continued to disrobe, gradually revealing her diminutive figure in what I imagined as a private audience, I stooped to retrieve the belt. “Excuse me, I think you dropped this,” I said casually to her back. As she turned, her sharp features came into view: An isosceles nose and angular jaw, not manlike, but designed. Her curly, almost crunchy looking, hair framed her face well, and she replied though thin lips, “Thank you so much, I kinda need that, huh?”
“No! No! You need neither that, nor any other clothing in my presence!,” my lustful heart wanted to cry.
“Guess so,” was the tepid response my level-headed brain formed in my mouth instead.
At least I remembered to smile my best smile while speaking, and was met with one just as warm and promising in return (and, in my head, no doubt).
Presently, I was aware of her scent as we moved: An overpowering wash of roses and cigarettes, the stink of the latter somehow imbued with the headiness of the former, combining into some sort of otherworldly aphrodisiac scent that said, “I’m delicate and feminine, but I totally do it.” It was only later, after using the restroom, that I realized the scent had been transferred, permanent-for-the-night, to my hand, presumably from my brief belt-fetching. (Yes, I do make it a habit of sniffing my hands after washing them in the restroom. It’s some compulsive thing I do to ensure my hands are truly “clean,” regardless of #1 or #2.)
Back in the present, Rosed and Cigarettes preceded me through the portal-of-ensuritude and we both began to reclaim our clothing and ore-laden effects from the rolling belts on the other side. As she redressed next to me, I sighed, overly loud, as I re-threaded my belt through the loops of my sliperry, pleatless, cuffless, khakis, in hopes she would hear. She did. Turning, in all her pale crisp-angled glory, to me and speaking, she said, “Take care,” as I walked away. “Thanks,” I replied, “you too.”
And, as I walked away towards my gate, my heart crumbled to dust at the prospect of the life I’d lost for not being with her.
Secondthingwise, I read a book today on the plain/train/shuttle. A book a friend loaned me because he said I needed to read the author’s work. He even commented as such right here on this very blogish thing. When I saw him this weekend, I borrowed one he recommended, and set about digging in today. I hadn’t intended to day-read it, but it was short and really good and I totally got sucked in. It was called A Maze of Death and it was a kind of theological/metaphysical/sci-fi mashup that I totally dug. Anyway, whenever I read something, I have this misconception that it makes me write better. I have no idea from whence this delusion comes, but I labor under it still. In fact, I wrote a ton today on the train in between fits of reading; all of it thumbed into my BlackBerry in a gush. I decided, however, after some consult, to leave over these bits for tomorrow – as having them pre-written will afford me an evening “off.” Unfortunately (right?) for you, this means you’ll have to to wait.
Speaking of the train (I was, I swear), it always amazes me how many people stumble onto public transit in the early-morning still reeking of liquor. Today, as the train hit its downtown run, at least three people wobbled on looking worse for wear and emanating the sickly-sweet aroma of a night spent in the bottle. One guy even paced the center aisle in a decidedly certifiable stomp, back and forth, back and forth, chuckling loudly to some unheard joke replaying silently for him alone, making everyone uncomfortable. These roll-your-own-smokes types seem to flock to the train, maybe as shelter from the biting cold outside on the concrete where they live. For me, to wake up smelling of booze is an awful, shameful thing. The kind of thing that will get you in deep trouble with the Lord and make your soul weep. I can’t imagine reconciling myself to a life of waking up that way. It must be terribly depressing.
I should so be writing employee reviews right now, but I’ve squandered my battery life on blogging. Tsk-tsk. Looks like tomorrow will be a late night getting things finalized. Good thing I have boxed-content ready to go, hope you don’t mind leftovers.
And, 23% battery dictates I now say: Love you all truly and deeply and madly. Goodnight.