July 7, 2010

I’ve been hoping for revelations lately.

There has been few in the last days. Only the constant output and input of energy. Gas, food, sleep.

Left Hattiesburg and got caught in a major highway blockage, first there was a 3 car pile up that just, just happened. I realized that it was a matter of minutes that made the difference of me being involved in this or not. I thought the traffic had slowed down to look at this fender bender but it seems the fender bender happened because the traffic was stopped in front of them.

It’s hot. Mississippi hot. I pulled over to take my leather jacket off and put on sunscreen. I get back on the road at a snails pace that went on and on. As I already mentioned, this bike is air cooled so I have to be moving. Going from first to neutral for 30 minutes does not qualify as motion. The engine’s temperature is steadily climbing. There was an exit sign that said a mile ahead, but at that rate might as well be 50.

I pulled to the side again, got off and watched as everyone is parked on the Freeway.

Gridlock in Mississippi

another fellow cooling off as the traffic is stopped

Man it’s hot. Did I say that already? Not complaining mind you, especially when I see the Vancouver weather this year, so far it will produce a windfall of rotten tomatoes…

Things started to crawl again, I got on the bike and slowly made my way to the exit. I decided to head West towards Natchez. Lets do the trace from the source.

On my way to the cheapest motel in town, I stopped at the visitors center. It was closed. But there I met Robert.

Robert is a law man. Worked for the Houston police for years. He is now security at the tourist center.

Robert said : “You by yourself? I knew you was a woman coming off that bike because of those women thighs. What’s your husband says about you ridin’ around by yourself like this? Oh I’m sorry. You looks happy. I likes your smile. You gotta nahce smile.” Robert told me about good and bad people in the world. He told me to be careful. He told me how he likes to get home and drink a little wine or beer. Turn on the TV. He told me he’d likes to spend time with me. Just talk, you know what I’m sayin’?

Robert is a sweet soul. He’s seen many ugly things in the police force. He calls himself a lawman or Dog. So he left me his phone number and said to call him someday from somewhere, just to let him know I made it OK. I will. When I left he walked away as he got emotional. A sweet soul.

Sweet sadness of human solitude when we meet briefly entwine our worlds by way of few words then disengage, separate and go our own ways.

I’ve been leaving a lot of people for the last month. Meet. Laugh, Leave. Move on. Sometimes my heart cries out, strains backwards, towards the West to feel the ties, but they unwind, unravel, loosened by the wind and the calls of those who persist are covered by the high pitch whistle birthed by my helmet. They finally disappear lost in the distance that grows everyday. I feel like a particle of dust in the atmosphere.

I went to another Dairy Queen and had my second small vanilla dipped cone of this voyage. But there was no one there. No special meeting. Just one guy who just stares at me as if I was an alien. I guess I am.

I get my cone, go back outside. Tears run down my face as I look out from the parking lot. A bird flutters by so gracefully. There are whispers of orange clouds in the sky. The cars rumble by and a K-mart sits on the horizon. I am a stranger. I am no one. I tried to call someone but no one answered. I found the business card from the Big Bear Stranger still in my breast pocket almost illegible by now. The sun is slowly setting. I lean on a light post, black, shiny light post. My heart aches. Cars come up the driveway to DQ, people stare at me. Not from around here are you?

I slept a another spectacular motel.

The Natchez Inn

my room, my bike, the sky

A hot bath, the A/C rumbles, the bathroom fan grumbles. The smell of bleach emanates from the water. My legs are white my arms are brown. I could be in orbit in space and it would not feel much different.

Four walls and a floor and a roof. I stopped the A/C, wanting some quiet but I now hear the rhythmic banging coming from the room next door. I really don’t need to hear that. Restart the A/C.

I woke up early. 6:30 AM

Lets go. I am actually cold with this stupid air conditioning. I pack up the bike, check the oil, try to check the air in the tires and my digital pressure gauge is another casualty of the rain. It’s fogged up and not reading right. I’ll need a back tire before too long. One thing of note, I have not burned any oil since the last tune up. Was it the plugs? I am glad. That was worrying me a bit.

I had a great breakfast with (those were weird) but the rest of the food was excellent at the Natchez Coffee Company. The owner came to me and acksed me where I was from and man, from there it was everyone who wanted to know. Where was I heading to? Where had I been? A table full of men just smiling, laughing, chatting. It was fabulously heart warming. Again, the blessings. Always the blessings on my path.

I am heading for the Natchez trace. The Natchez trace. Not a road, a trail or a path but a trace. I will go alone on the Natchez trace to feel the call of the past. To be out of the world.

Found myself 30 miles off course, then back on course.

the Natchez trace

I am near Jackson Mississippi now. I ate, will get gas, just finished espresso. I am aiming for at least Tupelo today and possibly Nashville and hopefully more blessings tomorrow.


2 Responses to “”

  1. Keith Franklin Says:

    Hi Danielle,
    Again, it was great talking with you in Sedona. Glad to see your trip is going well. New Orleans is one of my favorite cities. That’s my Dad’s hometown so I have some great memories of my visits there. Left Sedona after going to the Grand Canyon. Your post says it all, it’s beyond description. I’m currently in Breckenridge Colorado, a small town in the mountains of Colorado. If you come this way worth the stop. I couldn’t find a way to post some pictures in this blog entry. So I’ll email them to you.
    Safe Travels

    • Keith! What a beautiful surprise! Good to hear from you. I am in Tupelo Mississippi right now getting ready to head to Nashville. I might see Colorado on this trip. I’ll keep Breckenridge in mind.

      I wish you an amazing summer, don’t hesitate to write!

      God bless

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