Notes from the Road, #8

The last bus due out here left two hours ago. It’s far too easy to get sidetracked at the Wally World, and since service ends early on Sundays, I came to the conclusion that I probably got the last bus traveling westbound for the mall.

If it wasn’t the last bus, then it was the next to last bus.

This time, I had my reusable bags, and everything I got was light enough and small enough that I could take my chances. The haul was sizable, and I felt confident (or cocky) enough that I was going through with it.

No way I was calling for a ride. It’s a non-option. Lyft and Uber, not in my budget this month. Besides, how else am I gonna lose the last of this weight? A gime?

That leaves me only one option: duke out the 5 mile walk in sub-freezing weather. The deal’s done, it’s outta my hands now.

I walk across the parking lot, sidestepping the giant frozen puddles and the remaining slush from earlier in the day. It’s only around 8, but it may as well be midnight. I reach the main thoroughfare and cross in front of a nearby local chain store among the construction going on.

I used to work there for almost a year in college, before I had a health scare I’ve since learned never had to get as bad as it did, if not otherwise completely avoidable. I still miss that place. I often wonder where I’d be there if I hadn’t gotten sick when I did.

Probably no longer working there, on account of the damage from the freak accident I was in almost three years ago. This scenario would’ve been much easier to cope with, since it would’ve been nobody’s fault.

That place was paradise compared to the job I had before. The less said about it, along with the people involved, and the companies that put me on the path to that job, the better. All I’ll say is that it no longer exists, and the owner’s long gone from this town.

I see people in the little family-owned Mexican restaurant that used to be a local restaurant chain, so I stop in and take a peek through the window. The TV’s turned to one of the local channels, and it’s a show I don’t recognize. Goes to show how long it’s been since I watched any of the evening shows on that channel, eh?

I guess I’ll figure it out with the TV Guide app on my phone when I get back. I’ve got it on WiFi only. I’m not going broke over this dumb thing any more than I have to with the cellular data.

I keep it moving to stay warm. I see a house for sale nearby, and I wonder to myself if I could live there. At that price point, the bus stop better be in front of my house, and it better be a good bus route, too. By good, I mean service 7 days a week.

I make it down the hill with only one close call on the ice, knock on wood. At this point, I don’t care if something happens to my bad arm, as long as I keep my good arm the way it is.

I pass by the golf course, and I hear screaming. Loud screaming and yelling. At first I think someone’s in trouble, so I grab my phone from my pocket and unlock it, ready to call for help. I think about trying to jump the fence, but it’s too high, and too difficult in my condition. I stand close to the fence and make out two figures in the distance. It’s a cloudy and moonless night, and I see that one of them has a sled in their hands.

I’ll be damned. They’re going sledding in the middle of the night! Seriously, that sounds like something I’d love to do sometime, now that my snowpants are starting to fit the way I want ’em to.

I’ve never seen these people before. I don’t think I could even point them out if I were to run into them on the street. I have no idea what they look like, or where they were in life. I wonder if maybe this was to get away from whatever was going on in their lives.

I shift my bags on my good shoulder, and keep walking. The quicker I can move safely, the sooner I’ll be home. Nobody knows I’m out here walking like this, and I’d like to keep it that way. Anyone asks, I’ll just say the bus broke down by the freeway or something, haha.

I suddenly realize I forgot something, so as I pass by the small grocery store I frequent, I stop in for it. Just my luck I still had enough room in the bags. It adds to the weight, and I struggled on the walk. Then I got to thinking. I remembered this was what I used to carry around all the time, and then some.

I’m floored that I was able to do what I did at that weight with my height, even if I royally sucked at it according to some. To me, all I care about is that I did it, and that’s the way I want you readers to view yourselves and your approach to fitness. Focus on what you’re able to do, no matter what it looks like. And for the love of all that’s holy, make sure whatever you’re doing is safe for you to do.

About 20 minutes later, I’m home. I unload everything, put it all away, and make my customary dinner of what I meal-prepped paired with a veggie of some type.

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