The load didn’t hold. Two hours in, the middle shifted – I saw the mattresses begin their driver’s side lurch. Three hours in, a trucker was very adamant I exit immediately. I did. The man getting gas at the station was very helpful: You need help.
Forty-five minutes later and Cal and I have purchased and learned how to attach what I term “wench-y” things to the trailer. Every thirty minutes we stop and examine the trailer. Looks like we have a loose box but nothing left to hold it on with. We drive slowly and keep it wedged in tight as we can.
I’ve already called Kevin and told him he’s meeting me – I might can hit Memphis with the load like this.
Wee hours of a.m. and Little Rock: I see the box hit the middle of the road. I pull over what feels like half a mile down the road and step out of the truck. At that point, you really need to recall that scene in Terminator 2 when Evil Trucker plows off the bridge into the ravine. As I shut my door and turn, in the pitch black of morning, a semi hits the box and sparks all the way toward me quite rapidly although it all seemed slow-mo at the time. He stops 12 feet and parallel from me. He pulls over, inspects the damage (none, I suppose) and drives off, neglecting to sue me.
I begin the walk back to find the box (ha). A policeman has pulled over and is directing traffic around the carnage: a wardrobe box of some of my lesser clothes (that Vishnu!) and Caleb’s computer. I step over pieces of monitor, hard drive (Kevin asks: Did you get the video card? Moron.) and speakers. I pick up clothing. I hear: Darlin’? Could you get out of the middle of the road and let me do that?
The policeman begins making piles of my clothing and tossing computer parts at the bridge wall. I pick up the printer (I don’t know why) and cords. Nothing else looks really salvageable. Some of the clothing has flown over the bridge, we think, while noting (with a flashlight shining in the eyes of) the river bathers below: “Y’all get some clothes on ‘fore I get down there, hear?” Policeman yells. I wonder if they’ll be mine. The clothes, not the bathers.
I make two trips (half a mile if it’s a quarter) to the truck and on the first trip I run into a trucker who’s pulled over and says to the cop: “I’m here to help you pull outta this.” They work together to get the sharp bits off the road and then the trucker goes to my truck to tighten the load, I guess.
I pick up a low-heeled Van Eli boot and the Policeman yells: “Oh good! You found the other one!” No, just the one he’d stacked for me. We’re disappointed for a moment and then he says, “Tell you what, if that trucker says your load is good to go, you best get on out of here. I’ve called the Highway Department and they’re gonna want to know why I didn’t ticket you.”
“Yes, sir” and I’m gone.
None of this was my fault. I mean it.
The kids went to Star Wars at 9p. I’m popping pills. Looking for wine. Whatever.