Friday, January 04, 2008

I'm Baaaack

ray at buffalo
Originally uploaded by mygothlaundry
I have returned to Asheville and I'm enjoying the last day of my vacation by avoiding the kitchen, which looks kind of like a medieval village probably looked not long after the Black Death took all the inhabitants. If the inhabitants liked to nuke junk food and leave the wrappers around, that is. That's what happens when I leave for 6 days.

This is a picture of my friend R in Charleston, sitting outside Buffalo South on James Island, which seems to have become my new local Charleston bar by default - i.e., M hangs out there, the people are friendly and it's right down the street from M's apartment. R expressed a wish to see his face on my blog, so, here you are, R: you are on the blog. R, by the way, is the mutual friend who made M call me one fine night back in October, thus leading to a big old change in the course of history, so we owe him.

In other news, whew. It was a long strange interesting week and I have tons of things to say, so look for a whole bunch of posts in the next couple of days, but I'll start with the general recap here. On the day this picture (it's R. Did I mention that it's R? Yeah, that's my friend R, who has been my friend so long now that I think we're related or something.) was taken (last Friday. A week ago. It feels like another lifetime; I hate that about vacations) I drove down to Charleston.

I was late getting out of work and when I got to my car my left rear tire looked low, so I went over to the gas station on Merrimon to add air. The cheapest gas in the Carolinas, as you may or may not know, is found in the upstate around Spartanburg and now that I have discovered this I have all kinds of wacky plans whereby to maximize my extra 6 cents a gallon or whatever. Therefore I try to leave Asheville with just enough gas to get to the Crackaroo (the only official Crackaroo is on James Island, actually, but I like saying it so much that I have dubbed all Kangaroos, as in Kangaroo Giant Mega Corp Gas Station Truck Stop Convenience Store Prison Camp and General Howdy Doo Places Crackaroos. C&D letter to follow in 3, 2, 1. . . ) near Highway 11. So I put a little gas in the car and then I tried to put air in the car but there was no gauge on the tank and it started pissing down rain and three winos were watching me in the rain fiddling around with the air hose and the tire and the whole thing with more than usual interest, so I gave up and got on the highway. Where I panicked badly because of the rain and the pea soup fog and the weird noises my car was making, like, shumpa whumpa sckreek screek. Also, I was PMSing, which never helps, and I kept thinking about how the front bumper is about to fall off since I keep hitting the little concrete thingie at the parking lot (shut UP. I can't help it.) and about how old my car is and needs a front end alignment and so on.

So I stopped at the BP at the Saluda exit, a quivering mass of nerves and everyone there turned out to be the nicest people in the universe. A guy came running out to show me that my gas tank was still open and the cap was flapping in the breeze, which accounted for some of the noises, my bumper did not fall off even when I pulled on it and somebody loaned me a tire gauge, after which another guy came out and checked my tires for me. In the rain. Go ye and spend your money at the BP at the Saluda exit off I-26 for they are awesome.

Then I got back on the road, which was still hairy, and then M called and the PMS kicked in because he, being, you know, sane, was just, like, "Great! See you when you get here!" and I, as I hung up, thought that he just didn't understand and was unconcerned for the fact that my life was in danger. Thank the gods for over drama, though, because then I managed to start giggling at myself by thinking about how I should probably have told him about the pterodactyls and the fog wraiths with the nine inch nails coming at the windshield and all that stuff and it stopped raining anyway around Newberry and I got into Charleston just fine and we tried but failed to find a party on Folly and ended up going to Buffalo (and there was R! Hey, R!) instead and then the next day we left for Baltimore, about which trip blog posts in, I promise, way less exhaustive detail, will follow.

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