Road Trip [Short Story]

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Awake. Phone. 2:50am. Small orange light at feet. Benny breathing quietly in sleeping bag. Five days in and I just want to go back to university.

It’s not that I don’t like Benny or the Polish countryside or these little villages or the museums or the art galleries. They’re all wonderful really. I just need a woman – the possibility of dwelling on a possibility. I can’t fancy anyone if I can’t speak to them. Or they can’t fancy me. That’s more important. It’s not as if there’s anyone in particular back home. But there could be someone waiting around the corner. And that’s what lets me sleep.

My night feelings impress themselves as both profound and confusing. I can never remember any of them. I’ll be at the end of a thought, very proud of my conclusions, and suddenly have no idea what my conclusions are. Or even my premises.

It’s the dip before the hip I miss most. And the tummy. She had a wonderful stomach. What was her name? I could spread my palm and hold her. And kiss her lips. They could be dry, they were still wonderful.

But I’m stuck here with the orange and having to speak through my friend. Maybe I can find someone soft to hold onto here in Eastern Europe. If I was a different person I could. If I was Benny. I’m not. I barely have the confidence in my own language. Living in a fantasy world.

Runny nose. If Benny’s awake he might hear crying. I’m not, but he might hear it. It’s just what happens when I lie down.

“Mustn’t think about the past. Mustn’t fantasize. I must focus on reality.” That’s what I’m thinking. In truth I’m imagining a lot of images with no feeling behind them. I often find it hard to know how I feel. Am I happy, sad, anticipatory? Is that a feeling? What are feelings?

My problem is that my life is so boring that there’s nothing on which to dwell. Must be why I wanted an adventure so much. Adventure is something to think about. Adventure lets me dream. Adventure lets me sleep.

Image credit: Stuck in Customs via Compfight

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